Cardiac Ablation to Get Your Rhythm Back

When most people think about their heart, they have difficulty understanding how destroying some of the tissue in the heart can actually be helpful. This is a natural reaction when we tell a patient that cardiac ablation may be necessary to correct their abnormal heart rhythm. We perform different types of ablation in our Electrophysiology Clinic in Hunterdon Cardiovascular Associates.

What is cardiac ablation?

The goal of cardiac ablation is to destroy the pathway of the abnormal rhythm. This is usually done with a catheter with electrodes at the tip. Cardiac ablation will stop the source of the electrical signals that are creating the abnormal rhythms. It can also disconnect the electrical pathway between the upper chambers (atria) and the lower chambers (ventricles) of the heart.

Who is a candidate for cardiac ablation?

We use cardiac ablation to correct problems with a patient’s heart rhythms. For normal function, our hearts must beat in regular rhythm. These contractions are initiated by electrical impulses that must follow a precise path, otherwise the patient can have arrhythmia, an abnormal heart beat.

Cardiac ablation usually isn’t the first treatment option, but it may be the right approach for patients with these characteristics:

  • Experienced side effects from medications to treat their arrhythmia
  • Haven’t responded to medications to treat their arrhythmia
  • Have types of arrhythmias that respond well to ablation
  • Are at a high risk for complications, such as cardiac arrest, due to their arrhythmias

Types of cardiac ablation

There are different methods with our cardiac ablations in the Electrophysiology Clinic:

  • Atrial flutter ablation— This creates scar tissue in the upper right chamber of the heart, blocking the electrical signals causing a fluttering heartbeat.
  • Pulmonary vein isolation— This creates scar tissue in the part of the left upper chamber where the pulmonary veins connect.
  • Supraventricular tachycardia— This creates scar tissue within both upper chambers.
  • Ventricular tachycardia ablation— Ventricular tachycardia is the term for electrical signals originating in the lower chambers of the heart, causing the heart to beat too quickly. This ablation eliminates those areas.

If you have symptoms of an irregular heartbeat, we need to see you at Hunterdon Cardiovascular Associates. Call us at (908) 788-1710 to schedule your consultation.

Posted in: Cardiac Device/Electrophysiology Clinic

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