"This book is incredibly complete and easy-to-understand for anybody. I certainly recommend it for patients who want to know more about atrial fibrillation than what they will learn from doctors...."

Pierre Jaïs, M.D. Professor of Cardiology, Haut-Lévêque Hospital, Bordeaux, France

"Dear Steve, I saw a patient this morning with your book [in hand] and highlights throughout. She loves it and finds it very useful to help her in dealing with atrial fibrillation."

Dr. Wilber Su Cavanaugh Heart Center, Phoenix, AZ

"Your book [Beat Your A-Fib] is the quintessential most important guide not only for the individual experiencing atrial fibrillation and his family, but also for primary physicians, and cardiologists."

Jane-Alexandra Krehbiel, nurse, blogger and author "Rational Preparedness: A Primer to Preparedness"


"Steve Ryan's summaries of the Boston A-Fib Symposium are terrific. Steve has the ability to synthesize and communicate accurately in clear and simple terms the essence of complex subjects. This is an exceptional skill and a great service to patients with atrial fibrillation."

Dr. Jeremy Ruskin of Mass. General Hospital and Harvard Medical School

"I love your [A-fib.com] website, Patti and Steve! An excellent resource for anybody seeking credible science on atrial fibrillation plus compelling real-life stories from others living with A-Fib. Congratulations…"

Carolyn Thomas, blogger and heart attack survivor; MyHeartSisters.org

"Steve, your website was so helpful. Thank you! After two ablations I am now A-fib free. You are a great help to a lot of people, keep up the good work."

Terry Traver, former A-Fib patient

"If you want to do some research on AF go to A-Fib.com by Steve Ryan, this site was a big help to me, and helped me be free of AF."

Roy Salmon Patient, A-Fib Free; pacemakerclub.com, Sept. 2013

Technology & Innovations

Force-Sensing Technologies

For the newest article see: 2014 AF Symposium: The New Era of Catheter Ablation Technology: Force Sensing Catheters

Endosense TactiCath ablation catheter can detect excessive contact force during robotic catheter navigation.

It’s been discovered that the force applied to heart tissue during RF ablation affects the size and safety of the lesions. Too little force results in lesions that are smaller in volume and depth and may not be effective. Too much force can result in pressure- and overheating-related complications such as steam pops, coagulum formation, or charring at the electrode. In worst cases they can lead to perforation and/or stroke.

(That’s why A-Fib patients are advised to seek out A-Fib doctors with experience who perform enough ablations a year to maintain and develop the “touch,” manual dexterity, and skill necessary to produce good ablations. Unlike other arrhythmias, A-Fib ablation requires greater technical skill, more time, and more lesions.)

New force-sensing technologies help doctors apply appropriate force. Sensors on the catheter give instantaneous feedback on the force applied at the catheter tip and even the angle of the catheter.

The Contact Force Sensor Catheter (TactiCath, Endosense, SA) uses three optical fibers to measure “microdeformation”—how much the catheter tip bends when pressed against heart tissue. The force applied changes the wavelength of light in the optical fibers. The force applied during an ablation shows up on an imaging/mapping system as either yellow, green or red. Doctors can see when they make an ablation how much force they applied to a particular spot. (Posted 2011)

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Return to Index of Articles: Research and Innovations

Last updated: Sunday, February 15, 2015

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