Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Asheville’s Mission launches new afib procedure

Asheville’s Mission Hospital says it is the first in North Carolina to perform a new ablation strategy for treating atrial fibrillation, the most common type of arrhythmia affecting as many as 7 million Americans.

“This procedure is one of the biggest advances in heart care in the last decade. It is safer and data shows it is more effective,” Brad Kappalman, vice president of heart services at Mission, said in a release. Mission is owned by HCA Healthcare, the largest U.S. hospital operator.

The new Farapulse PFA System was developed by Boston Scientific and received U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval earlier this year. It uses a different approach that increases the safety of the ablation procedure, Mission officials said. Ablation refers to removing a body part or tissue through surgery, drugs or other methods.

“The incidence of atrial fibrillation is on the rise, and such safe, effective and efficient therapies allow physicians to reduce complications, treat more patients, and benefit the overall public health,” added Jason Lappe, Mission’s chief of electrophysiology.

Boston Scientific bought Farapulse for nearly $300 million in 2021. The approval has boosted the Marlborough, Mass.-based company’s financial outlook, with higher profit expected because of increased demand for heart devices. Shares have increased about 17% so far this year.

Three patients have had the procedure this week at Mission, spokeswoman Nancy Lindell says.

Atrial fibrillation can decrease the heart’s pumping efficiency, prompting potential clots and lead to strokes.

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