An Overview of Atrial Flutter

 

Atrial Flutter pic
Atrial Flutter
Image: stanfordhealthcare.org

Dr. Sanjiv M. Narayan serves as a professor of medicine and the director of the Stanford Arrhythmia Center at Stanford University. Over the course of his career, Dr. Sanjiv Narayan’s research on atrial fibrillation has been cited in multiple studies pertaining to the condition and related disorders, such as atrial flutter.

Atrial flutter is a cardiac abnormality wherein the upper chambers of the heart beat too fast, causing muscles in the area to contract and fall out of sync with the heart’s lower chambers. The heart beats an average of 250 to 400 times per minute, as opposed to the healthy rate of 60 to 100. Compared to atrial fibrillation, the rapid heartbeat occurs in a regular, more organized manner and appears as a sawtooth pattern on electrocardiogram tests.

Because the rapid heartbeat stays at a steady pace for people with atrial flutter, some individuals will not notice any symptoms. Those who do may experience shortness of breath, chest discomfort, heart palpitations, fainting, and dizziness or lightheadedness. While not life-threatening, the condition can potentially lead to more series complications if left untreated. For instance, it increases the risk for blood clots, which can in turn cause stroke or heart failure.

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Acutus and Stereotaxis Partner to Improve Electrophysiology Tools

 

Stereotaxis’s Niobe system pic
Stereotaxis’s Niobe system
Image: stereotaxis.com

A Heart Rhythm Society member and advocate, Dr. Sanjiv Narayan is a cardiac research scientist and Southern California professor who has published on subjects related to mapping and ablation of atrial fibrillation (AF). Past studies co-authored by Dr. Sanjiv Narayan showed that mapping AF can identify drivers, which supports the work of groundbreaking firms like Acutus Medical, which announced in mid-2018 an important collaboration with robotic technology company Stereotaxis.

The goal of this agreement is to support the work of electrophysiology physicians and improve levels of care for cardiac arrhythmia patients by integrating Acutus Medical AcQMap technology with the Niobe Magnetic Navigation System by Stereotaxis.

Acutus first received FDA approval for its AcQMap technology in October 2017. The technology is a high-resolution 3D imaging system that relies on ultrasound technology combined with dipole density mapping to visualize heartbeats in real time. It gives physicians a tool to monitor a patient’s heart moment-to-moment during ablation procedures.

Stereotaxis’s Niobe system is a magnetic navigation system that gives physicians more exact, steady remote control over instruments used during procedures, including the catheters necessary for the ablation process. Leadership from both Acutus and Stereotaxis praised the “interoperability” of the two systems in a press release, contending the integration of the technologies will improve physician workflow, and has the potential to significantly improve the experience of cardiology patients.