Why are cardiac ablations done
Cardiac ablation is a minimally invasive heart procedure carried out by an Interventional cardiologist in a Cardiac Catheterization laboratory in order to treat abnormal heart rhythm (Arrhythmia).
It is also known as Cardiac catheter ablation or Radiofrequency ablation. It involves use of radiofrequency energy to destroy a small portion of heart tissue that is responsible for faulty electrical signals causing irregular heartbeat.
Under normal scenario, when heart is functioning normally, there are specialized cardiac muscle cells forming the cardiac conduction system that is responsible for generating and propagation of electrical signals to the heart muscles causing them to contract in coordination, so that the blood is pumped effectively.
RFA is usually recommended when medicines for treating arrhythmia are either causing side effects or are ineffective. Radiofrequency ablation helps in restoration of normal heart rhythm. It is important to note here that every patient with abnormal heartbeat does not require RFA. Most of the patients do get good results from medicines alone, however, few of them may not, for which the heart specialist will determine the viability and benefits of RFA after running certain tests and clinically evaluating the patient.
Medicines act on the abnormal heart tissue and try restore the normal heart rhythm whereas RFA (Radiofrequency ablation) destroys the trouble causing tissue once for all.
SVT (Supraventricular tachycardia), atrial flutter or fibrillation are the indications for RFA. Irregular heartbeat leads to ineffective pumping of blood by the heart causing symptoms such as fainting spells, shortness of breath and fatigue.