Wednesday, October 26, 2022 San Juan Regional Medical Center Offering Innovative Treatment Solution for Atrial Fibrillation Patients

San Juan Regional Medical Center is now offering a minimally invasive treatment option for some atrial fibrillation patients. Cardiac cryoablation is an FDA approved treatment option for patients with recurrent symptomatic paroxysmal atrial fibrillation as an alternative to antiarrhythmic drug therapy. 

Atrial fibrillation (AFib) is the most common arrhythmia in America. It’s a progressive condition that affects people of all ages. The longer a person is in AFib, the worse the heart gets. This is linked to a reduced quality of life, robbing a patient of their natural heartbeat and energy, as well as heart failure, stroke and even death. The standard treatment for AFib is antiarrhythmic drug therapy, but even with drug therapy AFib reoccurs in approximately half of patients within a year of initial treatment. 

Cryoablation is a newer type of ablation that has a very high success rate. The procedure is performed by an electrophysiologist who specializes in the treatment of irregular heart rhythms. During this minimally invasive procedure, an electrophysiologist uses a special cryoballoon catheter to deliver a refrigerant to the heart. That refrigerant freezes the tissue and disables unwanted electrical signals that contribute to AFib from reaching the rest of the heart.

“The heart really likes cool rather than heat. It causes a much better lesion and in doing so it can help you cure arrhythmias,” said Dr. Cary Rose, Electrophysiologist at San Juan Regional Medical Center. “The best part about cryoablation for AFib is that it is not surgery. There is no cutting. There are no stitches.”

Patients who undergo a cryoablation at San Juan Regional Medical Center are kept overnight for observation. Since it’s not a surgical procedure, recovery is quick, and the patient outcomes are outstanding. 

“Cryoablation is a safe and effective option to improve AFib patients’ outcomes early on before their condition progresses,” said Dr. Rose. “By treating patients with the most advanced, clinically relevant technology, we can successfully manage their condition and recurring symptoms, and make a huge difference in their lives.”

Cryoablation is short, safe and effective. The procedure significantly reduces the risk of AFib reoccurring, and patients are much less likely to need repeat ablations. Additional benefits include an improvement in a patient’s quality of life, with unpleasant symptoms such as shortness of breath, fatigue, and weakness lessening or disappearing. 

For more information on cardiac cryoablation, and if this procedure may be right for you, visit or call San Juan Regional Heart Center at 505.609.6770.

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