Montreal technology uses cold to treat heart condition

September 25, 2012

A team of cardiologists from the Montreal Heart Institute (MHI) specializing in cardiac arrhythmias has used for the very first time in Canada, a technology developed in Montreal to treat a patient with atrial fibrillation. Recently licenced by Health Canada, this sophisticated device is a balloon inserted by catheter that uses extreme cold to burn malfunctioning heart tissue. This medical milestone is excellent news for hundreds of Canadians as one in 20 people will suffer from atrial fibrillation at some point in their lives.

On September 4 2012, Doctor Marc Dubuc and Doctor Peter Guerra, both at MHI, performed the procedure in a 67-year-old female patient. The patient had been suffering from arrhythmia for a number of years and drug-based treatments had proved ineffective. The patient tolerated the procedure well and she was able to return to the comfort of her home barely 24 hours after the procedure.

Technology developed in Montreal This innovative technology was developed by Medtronic CryoCath, based in Montreal. The success of this procedure is particularly significant for Dr. Dubuc the principal investigator for the research carried out at Montreal Heart Insititute that resulted in the development of this technology. "This cryoballoon is a major milestone in the treatment of atrial fibrillation, as the duration of the procedure is reduced and it is both effective and safe for patients", Dr Dubuc stated proudly. Furthermore, a North American study has demonstrated that 69.9% of patients treated with this type of device no longer suffered from atrial fibrillation after one year, compared with 7.3% of those taking medication alone.

A type of heart disease that affects one in 20 people In Canada, almost 250,000 people suffer from this form of arrhythmia. Closely associated with an , this type of is becoming more and more common. The main symptoms are palpitations, blackouts and shortness of breath. The heart beats very quickly in an irregular and unpredictable manner. This weakens the heart and encourages blood clots to form, which can cause strokes and peripheral embolisms.

Explore further: Cryoablation used to successfully treat atrial fibrillation at the Montreal Heart Institute

Related Stories

Cryoablation used to successfully treat atrial fibrillation at the Montreal Heart Institute

May 11, 2011
The electrophysiology team at the Montreal Heart Institute (MHI) used cryoablation (ablation using cold) to treat a patient suffering from atrial fibrillation, the most common form of cardiac arrhythmia, and one associated ...

Freeze and desist: Disabling cardiac cells that can cause arrhythmia

September 12, 2011
Many patients are responding to a new, minimally invasive way of treating irregular heartbeats by freezing out the bad cells. Atrial fibrillation (A-Fib) is one such heart rhythm disorder, and it's the most common arrhythmia ...

New targeting technology improves outcomes for patients with atrial fibrillation

July 18, 2012
In a landmark study of atrial fibrillation, researchers from UCLA, UC San Diego and Indiana University report having found for the first time that these irregular heart rhythms are caused by small electrical sources within ...

Recommended for you

Some cancer therapies may provide a new way to treat high blood pressure

November 20, 2017
Drugs designed to halt cancer growth may offer a new way to control high blood pressure (hypertension), say Georgetown University Medical Center investigators. The finding could offer a real advance in hypertension treatment ...

Could this protein protect people against coronary artery disease?

November 17, 2017
The buildup of plaque in the heart's arteries is an unfortunate part of aging. But by studying the genetic makeup of people who maintain clear arteries into old age, researchers led by UNC's Jonathan Schisler, PhD, have identified ...

Raising 'good' cholesterol fails to protect against heart disease

November 16, 2017
Raising so-called 'good' cholesterol by blocking a key protein involved in its metabolism does not protect against heart disease or stroke, according to a large genetic study of 150,000 Chinese adults published in the journal ...

Popular e-cigarette liquid flavorings may change, damage heart muscle cells

November 16, 2017
Chemicals used to make some popular e-cigarette liquid flavorings—including cinnamon, clove, citrus and floral—may cause changes or damage to heart muscle cells, new research indicates.

New model estimates odds of events that trigger sudden cardiac death

November 16, 2017
A new computational model of heart tissue allows researchers to estimate the probability of rare heartbeat irregularities that can cause sudden cardiac death. The model, developed by Mark Walker and colleagues from Johns ...

Possible use for botulinum toxin to treat atrial fibrillation

November 16, 2017
From temporarily softening wrinkles to easing migraines, botulinum toxin has become a versatile medical remedy because of its ability to block nerve signals that can become bothersome or risky.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.