The Heart Institute at Staten Island University Hospital Offers New Non-Surgical Procedure to Eliminate a Major Cause of Heart-Related Stroke

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The Heart Institute at Staten Island University Hospital is the first hospital in New York Area to perform this innovative procedure.

The Heart Institute image of electrophysiologist Dr. Marcin Kowalski

Dr. Marcin Kowalski, electrophysiologist at The Heart Institute

By effectively excluding the left atrial appendage without the need for open surgery, the LARIAT procedure offers them new hope in stroke prevention

On September 18th 2012, The Heart Institute became the first Hospital in Staten Island and fourth Hospital in the New York area to perform a non-surgical, new catheter-based procedure, that uses sutures to tie off the left atrial appendage (LAA) in the heart. The LAA is known to be a major source of blood clots, which may lead to stroke in patients with atrial fibrillation (AFib). The closure was performed at The Heart Institute’s electrophysiolgy laboratory by clinical cardiac electrophysiologist, Dr. Marcin Kowalski. The procedure used a new technology called the LARIAT™ Suture Delivery Device. The LARIAT enables remote suture closure without major surgery. The procedure used a pencil-sized access site on the chest to deliver the LARIAT outside of the heart. Another catheter was placed inside the heart to confirm placement location. Once in position, the LARIAT allows for placement of a pre-tied suture loop for immediate and permanent closure. Dr. Kowalski performed six LARIAT procedures to date all without complications. “Until recently, millions of people with atrial fibrillation who cannot tolerate drugs like Coumadin, Pradaxa, or Xarelto had no ideal option for reducing their higher risk of stroke,” said Dr. Joseph T. McGinn, Chairman, Director of Surgery Staten Island University Hospital. “By effectively excluding the left atrial appendage without the need for open surgery, the LARIAT procedure offers them new hope in stroke prevention.” AFib is an irregular heartbeat, a rapid heartbeat, or a quivering of the upper chambers of the heart that impacts more than 5.1 million people in the United States. Patients with AFib have a five times higher risk of stroke. The vast majority of these strokes arise from blood clots forming in a small portion of the heart called the left atrial appendage. Stroke is the #3 killer in the United States and is the #1 cause of permanent disability. For more information please contact Richard A. Clarke, at 917-868-1407, or by email: RClarke(at)TheHeartInstituteNY(dot)com.
About The Heart Institute
The Heart Institute opened in 2001 and is operated at the North Campus of Staten Island University Hospital at 475 Seaview Avenue. It is one of the nation’s leading heart hospitals, known for its pioneering techniques in heart surgery (MICS), angioplasties and electrophysiology (Afib), for its most advanced diagnostic technologies, post-surgical outpatient care, and cardiac prevention programs. Procedures include coronary bypass operations, heart valve repair/replacements, angioplasties, cardiac ablations and cardiac catheterizations.


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