by Steve Ryan, PhD
Back in 2002 when we started A-Fib.com, we listed only seven centers doing catheter ablations. Today our FREE Directory of Doctors and Medical Centers lists over 1,800 EPs from all corners of the US and many others from around the world. (We only list EPs who have the “Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology” certification and who register “AF Ablation” as part of their “Practice Information”. )
It’s very encouraging for A-Fib patients to see so many new EPs and centers performing catheter ablations. Few medical advances have been so rapidly and widely accepted.
Has This Growth Been Too Fast?
This rapid progress raises some issues. Has this growth been too fast? Are all these new EPs getting the training and hands-on experience they need? In fact, some EPs currently performing ablations have never passed their Clinical Cardiology Certification.
One measure of competency is the rate of complications following an ablation procedure. A study of Medicare data is very revealing about in-hospital complications following catheter ablations.
Low Volume Operators Have the Highest Complication Rates
What was the biggest predictor of complications? The centers with an A-Fib ablation volume of less than 25 ablations per year had the highest rate of compilations.
Imagine what my ablation would have looked like and turned out had I gone to an inexperienced EP?” −Travis Van Slooten.
Shocking―the facts get worse. … Continue reading this report…->