Hybrid Convergent Approach for Treatment of Arrhythmia

If you have had a heart rhythm disturbance called atrial fibrillation for a long time and it hasn’t responded to treatment, you’ll be glad to know that our network partner, Danbury Hospital’s Praxair Regional Heart and Vascular Center, offers an advanced treatment that may help.

Called the Hybrid Convergent Approach, this innovative therapy combines the best of electrophysiology (EP) and cardiac surgery in a minimally invasive treatment for longstanding cardiac arrhythmia.

This treatment offers several advantages, including:

  • It requires only a small (one-inch) incision in the abdomen, with no chest incisions or ports
  • Because it’s minimally invasive, there’s minimal pain
  • Your hospital stay is short (2 to 3 days)
  • We can use specialized diagnostic tests during the procedure to predict its success
  • You may be a candidate for the Hybrid Convergent Approach if: You’ve been living with arrhythmia for many years
  • You have structural heart disease
  • One of your atria (the 2 chambers through which blood enters your heart) is enlarged or growing
  • Previous catheter treatments, cardioversion or medications (AADs or beta blockers) have not been successful

If you have had a previous chest surgery, such as heart bypass or valve repair surgery, you are not a candidate for the Hybrid Convergent Approach.

The Hybrid Convergent Approach procedure uses radiofrequency energy (focused heat) to produce lesions (scar tissue) on the heart to block abnormal electrical signals.

During the procedure, a cardiac surgeon and an electrophysiologist (EP) work as a team to create scar lines in specific places in and around the heart. These scars isolate abnormal electrical signals that cause an abnormal heart rhythm and redirect them, restoring your heart’s normal rhythm and normal blood flow.

The surgeon operates through a small 2 cm incision in the abdomen, creating lesions on the outside surface of the heart. The electrophysiologist threads a catheter through the femoral vein (in the groin) to reach the heart from the inside. Once there, the catheter is used to complete the ablation pattern and perform diagnostic tests to confirm that the abnormal electrical signals have been stopped.

Patients who’ve undergone the Hybrid Convergent Approach may be able to reduce, or even stop taking, their daily heart rhythm medications. 

For more information or to schedule a consultation, please call 844-HEART-99 (844-432-7899).