Convergent Procedure Building Support For Interdisciplinary Approach To AF

New JCE Article Sets High Bar For Determining Ablation Success

Morrisville, NC –June 5, 2012 – An article was recently published in the Journal of Cardiovascular Electrophysiology entitled “Low Rate of Atrial Fibrillation Recurrence Verified by Implantable Loop Recorder Monitor Following a Convergent Epicardial and Endocardial Ablation of Atrial Fibrillation.” The article chronicles the development of an interdisciplinary approach for the treatment of atrial fibrillation, the Convergent Procedure, and illustrates the strong success of the site’s program. Outcomes were determined by the most stringent methodology, 24 hour loop recorders, which demonstrated unparalleled success in this patient cohort. Physician reaction to the paper has been positive.

“This paper may be reviewed in hindsight as a pivotal paper in determining the true standard for success of an ablation procedure. The paper documents the evolution of a closed chest, truly minimally invasive interdisciplinary procedure, the Convergent Procedure, its early challenges and lessons learned, the protocols developed to improve and insure clinical safety, and the successful patient experience as monitored by a continuous loop recorder, Medtronic’s Reveal XT. The Convergent Procedure has proven itself under today’s most stringent monitoring standards, and sets a new and higher standard for clinical and patient outcome success,” said lead author Prof. Dr. Borut Gersak, Chief of Cardiac Surgery, University Medical Center, Ljubljana, Slovenia.

“The data is impressive, and the results are consistent with results we have obtained utilizing the Convergent Procedure in our hospital, and abstracts presented at Boston AF Symposium and the Heart Rhythm Society Scientific Sessions (HRS). This is important because the procedure can be standardized to obtain consistent results among a variety of sites. The results with patients in sinus rhythm off anti-arrhythmic drugs (AADs) of 74% are even more impressive because 94% of the patients were persistent or long standing persistent patients. HRS defines catheter outcome success as ‘freedom from AF and off AADs at 40%’ for persistent patients and 30% for long standing persistent patients,” said Dr. Kenneth Civello, Cardiac Electrophysiologist, Our Lady Of The Lake Regional Medical Center, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA, who reported on over 104 consecutive Convergent patients in a key podium presentation at HRS earlier this month.

“The article’s take away message for me is that epicardial ablation should be viewed as complimentary ablation to traditional catheter approaches to improve outcomes, and to expand treatment capabilities to the broader AF patient population suffering from persistent or permanent atrial fibrillation with left atrial enlargement. It’s the combination of technologies and the epicardial-endocardial approach that is yielding results,” said Dr. Malte Kuniss, Chief of Electrophysiology, Kerckhoff Clinic in Bad Nauheim, Germany.

“This is an important paper because the Convergent Procedure addresses atrial fibrillation in a scientific manner by addressing both endocardial and epicardial substrates in a comprehensive anatomic approach. Its success can be related back to the large body of literature on lesion patterns, lesion completeness, substrate activation, anatomical remodeling, atrial stretch, and atrial function. This is not a potential magical silver bullet, but rather the use of an increasingly relevant and rapidly growing ablation technology to augment existing strategies,” said Prof. Dr. Paul Mounsey, Chief of Electrophysiology, University of North Carolina Hospital, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA.

About nContact, Inc.
nContact, Inc. is the leading innovator in epicardial ablation devices and techniques. Its mission is to transform the underserved arrhythmia market through the advancement of less invasive, more efficacious ablation alternatives for cardiac arrhythmias.

Its lead technologies, the EPi-Sense™ and Numeris® Coagulation System with VisiTrax®, have CE Mark approval in Europe for the coagulation of cardiac tissue for the treatment of atrial fibrillation and atrial flutter.

The Numeris® Coagulation System with VisiTrax® is indicated for endoscopic coagulation of cardiac tissue in the United States. The EPi-Sense™ device is not available in the United States. nContact was founded in 2005 and is headquartered in Morrisville, North Carolina, U.S.A.