Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

The first European registry to evaluate the real-life epidemiology of atrial fibrillation ablation

31.08.2011
Many patients are looking for a drug-free lifestyle

Results presented today from the Atrial Fibrillation Ablation Pilot Study show that almost 40% of patients undergoing a catheter ablation for atrial fibrillation have no underlying disease associated with the arrhythmia, and precipitating factors are rare.

The survey, which is a pilot survey from the ESC's EurObservational registry programme, also confirmed that symptoms are present in 86% of patients but vary considerably; symptoms include palpitations, fatigue, and shortness of breath or dizziness.

"The AFib Ablation Pilot Study shows that, while symptoms remain the major reason for an ablation procedure, patients are also looking for a drug-free lifestyle," said Professor Josep Brugada from Hospital Universitari Clínic of Barcelona, Spain, a joint lead investigator of the pilot study. "If we want to improve the quality of life of patients with atrial fibrillation, we have to find an effective technique which avoids anti-arrhythmic medication and its undesirable effects."

Atrial fibrillation (AFib) is the most common cardiac rhythm disorder, characterised by an erratic electrical activity of the heart. Over 6 million Europeans now suffer from the condition, and its prevalence is expected to at least double in the next 50 years as the population ages. The enormity of the problem is magnified by associated adverse events: increased mortality, stroke and other thromboembolic events, more heart failure and hospitalisations, and deterioration of quality of life, exercise capacity and cognitive function.

Much effort has been made to develop a definitive cure; anti-arrhythmic drugs are ineffective in many patients and have potentially serious side effects. There has thus been much research in the past decade into non-pharmacological alternatives for both the prevention and control of AFib.   Ablation techniques, usually performed percutaneously with a catheter, have proved successful in the treatment of AFib, particularly in the reduction of symptoms, to such an extent that a "cure" may well be achieved in some patients. Since its description in the late 1990s, catheter ablation has rapidly evolved from being a highly experimental technique to a well defined and everyday procedure.

The AFib Ablation pilot study is part of the ESC's EurObservation Research Programme, which began in August 2008. The project aims to provide a better understanding of European practice based on data collected with a robust methodology procedure. The AFib ablation study was designed to capture all the relevant clinical and procedural information in real-world patients in order to improve current knowledge of epidemiology and outcomes.

This first prospective, multicentre, 12-month observational study recruited 1410 patients from ten different European countries (four Western European - Belgium, France, Germany and the Netherlands; two Eastern European - Czech Republic and Poland; three Southern - Greece, Italy and Spain; and one Northern European - Denmark). The primary objective was to describe the clinical epidemiology of patients having AFib ablation, and the day-to-day diagnostic and therapeutic processes (including technical aspects, measurement of success and acute and chronic outcomes). The registry was launched in October 2010 and the database locked in June 2011.

Several important findings about AFib ablation have emerged:

75% of patients were between 52 and 66 years of age. A third of them were over 65 years.

Two-thirds of patients presented an average of two recurrent arrhythmic episodes per month.

Symptoms were present in 90% of patients and these were very variable: palpitations, shortness of breath, dizziness, chest pain or loss of consciousness.

An underlying cause was only found in 60% (mainly hypertension and valvular heart disease). Precipitating factors were rare.

More than 50% had an indication for chronic anti-coagulation (for the prevention of stroke), according to their embolic risk score.

90% underwent the ablation procedure for symptoms but in over one-third expressed a wish for a drug-free lifestyle and the maintenance of a normal heart rhythm.
Major complications such as cardiac perforation, cardiac arrest or stroke occurred in 1.2%. Minor complications such as vascular problems at the site of puncture or transient neurological alterations occurred in 7% of patients.

At discharge 97% of patients were prescribed anti-coagulants and 67% anti-arrhythmic medication

Only one death from a cardiovascular complication occurred. It was not related to the procedure.

The AFib Ablation Pilot Study provides a reliable assessment of the cardiovascular risk profile of patients with AFib undergoing a first catheter ablation, the evaluation of treatments they receive, and how these factors influence outcome in a real-world setting.

"Atrial fibrillation is a giant burden on our everyday practice," said Professor Brugada. "Research such as this AFib Ablation registry provides a unique insight into factors which influence therapeutic success and improves our knowledge of the impact catheter ablation has in the management of patients with this heart rhythm disorder."

About the European Society of Cardiology

The European Society of Cardiology (ESC) represents more than 71,200 cardiology professionals across Europe and the Mediterranean. Its mission is to reduce the burden of cardiovascular disease in Europe.

About ESC Congress 2011

ESC Congress 2011 will take place from 27 August to 31 August at Paris Nord Villepinte, Paris. Information on the scientific programme is available at http://spo.escardio.org/Welcome.aspx?eevtid=48 More information on ESC Congress 2011 is available from the ESC's press office at press@escardio.org.

Jacqueline Partarrieu | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.escardio.org

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Smart Data Transformation – Surfing the Big Wave
02.12.2016 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Angewandte Informationstechnik FIT

nachricht Climate change could outpace EPA Lake Champlain protections
18.11.2016 | University of Vermont

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Significantly more productivity in USP lasers

In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.

Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...

Im Focus: Shape matters when light meets atom

Mapping the interaction of a single atom with a single photon may inform design of quantum devices

Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

Silicon solar cell of ISFH yields 25% efficiency with passivating POLO contacts

08.12.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering

NTU scientists build new ultrasound device using 3-D printing technology

07.12.2016 | Health and Medicine

The balancing act: An enzyme that links endocytosis to membrane recycling

07.12.2016 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>