In order to figure out how to best handle Atrial fibrillation, researchers have come up with an implant that is set to transform the treatment of this deadly disease.
They have developed an amazing device known as the Watchman. It looks like a jellyfish, and protects patients from harmful blood clots that can develop in the heart as a result of Atrial fibrillation.
Atrial fibrillation, an abnormal heart rhythm characterized by a rapid and irregular heartbeat, affects about 33 million people worldwide. It increases the probability of blood clots, which can lead to strokes.
So far, in most of the cases, patients are given blood thinners for reducing the possibility of the formation of arterial clots, but these medicines have a myriad of side effects.
How Watchman works:
Watchman is inserted through a small incision in the groin and it shuts the left atrial appendage of the heart, which is believed to be responsible for 90 percent of all blood clots. The best part is, it can be inserted in less than an hour, and in most cases, patients only have to stay in the hospital for around 24 hours
As per Dr. Kanagaratnam, a researcher on the project, “It sits inside the left atrial appendage of the heart and stops clots from forming. The procedure is minimally invasive, involving a small cut in the groin. Patients recover quickly, generally needing to stay in the hospital only overnight.”
The Watchman was approved by the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) on March 13, 2015, after 10 years of testing.