Technology & Innovations
Laser Balloon Catheter
The variable size balloon of the Laser catheter (CardioFocus, Inc., Marlborough, MA) can be positioned in a vein opening to encircle the vein.
Two overlapping laser energy ablations can usually completely isolate the vein without any gaps. The catheter features direct visualization (endoscopic). The doctor sees directly through the catheter the area he/she is ablating.
Though the Laser Balloon Catheter is probably years away from FDA approval, it may have more potential than the CryoBalloon catheter. The variable size of the Laser Balloon makes it easier to manipulate and might enable it to fit better into the different sizes of pulmonary vein openings. Laser energy might produce more lasting lesions than Cryo. And direct visualization would certainly be a help to doctors doing an ablation and would reduce the amount of radiation patients and medical staff are exposed to.This is an example of what the doctor sees. “LSPV” is the Left Superior Pulmonary Vein, “LIPV” is the Left Inferior Pulmonary Vein. (posted 2011)
Schmidt, B. et al. Feasibility of Circumferential Pulmonary Vein Isolation Using a Novel Endoscopic Ablation System. Circ Arrhythm Elcetrophysiol published online Jul 24 2010. Last accessed Jan 11, 2013. http://www.cardiofocus.com/pdf/Schmidt_CircEP_Laser.pdf DOI: 10.1161/CIRCEP.110.954149
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Last updated: Sunday, February 15, 2015