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Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Denton Opens Cardiac Electrophysiology Lab|
People with abnormal heart rhythms, or arrhythmias, will now be able to access cardiac ablation treatments without traveling out of the Denton area. Other available treatments include pacemakers and implantable defibrillators.
“There were previously no electrophysiology diagnostic and treatment services available to residents in and around Denton,” said Haris Naseem, M.D., electrophysiologist on the medical staff at Texas Health Denton.
Normal wear and tear or loss of function of the sinus node, the heart’s natural pacemaker, can usually be treated with a pacemaker. Implanting these safety devices is a common procedure.
When the sinus node doesn’t perform properly, other cells take over its function, causing a faster or slower heart rate. There are a variety of treatment options available ranging from medications to tracking down actual pathways that are causing the problems. Once the pathway is mapped in an electrophysiology study — performed by a highly-trained cardiologist called an electrophysiologist — this rhythm can be ablated, or interrupted. Ablation options include a radiofrequency signal or cold/cryoablation.
“All types of electrophysiology studies and ablations will be performed here,” Naseem said. “For many patients, these procedures can provide a permanent cure for arrhythmias without the need to continue taking prescribed medications.”
According to the American Heart Association (AHA), radiofrequency ablation has become the preferred method to treat tachycardia arrhythmias, which occurs when the heart beats too fast (more than 100 times per minute). During a radiofrequency ablation procedure, a physician guides a catheter into a vein through the groin and threads it to the heart. The catheter contains a small electrode, and when physicians identify the pathway that is causing the heartbeat irregularity, radiofrequency waves are used to destroy the abnormal pathway.
Cryoablation, a process of using extreme cold to freeze selected cells, may also be used for specific patients experiencing atrial fibrillation — a rapid, chaotic heart rhythm.
Success rates for cardiac ablation are high, above 90 percent, according to the AHA. And, because the procedure is minimally invasive, patients often return to normal activities within a few days.
The field of electrophysiology provides advanced options for the diagnosis and treatment of rhythm disorders. If you are having symptoms, palpitations, dizziness or loss of consciousness, seek a medical diagnosis and treatment immediately.
About Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Denton
As one of the largest employers in Denton County, Texas Health Denton has more than 1,000 employees and more than 300 physicians on the medical staff practicing in more than 43 specialties. Texas Health Denton is an accredited chest pain center and an affiliate of Texas Health Resources, one of the largest faith-based, nonprofit health care delivery systems in the United States and the largest in North Texas in terms of patients served. For more information, call 1-877-THR-WELL, or visit TexasHealth.org/Denton.
About Texas Health Resources