A new technology for treatment of atrial fibrillation

01 July 2019

Patients at Spire Manchester Hospital can now benefit from laser balloon ablation treatment for atrial fibrillation - the only private hospital in the UK offering this treatment.

Atrial fibrillation is the most common abnormal heart rhythm and is often associated with symptoms that may include breathlessness, palpitations and fatigue as well as an increased risk of having a stroke. Patients are often treated with medication but if suitable, tend to do better with ablation.

Ablation aims to treat the abnormal electrical signals within the heart and is performed via the vein in the leg without having to cut open the chest. The Heartlight Excalibur ablation system uses a laser balloon and a tiny camera (endoscope) so that the cardiologist can see the area being treated directly rather than simply using X-rays or a computer mapping system.

Dr Scott Gall, consultant cardiologist recently performed the first laser ablation case at Spire Manchester Hospital with great outcomes for the patient. Dr Gall is a very experienced cardiologist specialising in the treatment of all heart rhythm problems including atrial fibrillation and is very experienced using the laser balloon. To date he has treated approximately 500 patients and has trained other specialists from the USA and Japan in this technology.

Dr Gall said, "The laser balloon is a unique technology, with excellent results. Being able to see exactly what I want to be treating allows me to be very precise in delivering the treatment. The laser energy is excellent at delivering long lasting treatment with the aim of trying to avoid the need for re-do procedures in the future. I am very pleased to be able to offer this treatment to patients at Spire Manchester Hospital and hope that many will be able to benefit from this."

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