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Cardiac Ablation Treatment for Arrhythmia

Whether felt as a racing heart, palpitations or a fluttering in the chest, an abnormal heart rhythm should be evaluated by a medical professional who can determine the most appropriate treatment. Medications work well for many people, but when those are not effective, treatment may include cardiac ablation. This minimally invasive procedure creates tiny scars in heart tissue to block electrical signals that are causing the abnormal heart rhythm, or arrhythmia.

“Ablation is a procedure in which we apply a form of energy called radiofrequency energy,” says Dr. Boris Bogomilov of Washington Regional Cardiovascular Clinic, part of the Walker Heart Institute. Bogomilov is a specialist in electrophysiology — the branch of cardiology that focuses on electrical activity of the heart, offering diagnosis and treatment of arrhythmia  and was one of the first electrophysiology specialists in Northwest Arkansas. Board certified in both cardiology and electrophysiology, he works closely with other cardiologists to evaluate and treat patients with arrhythmia.

In an ablation procedure, Bogomilov explains, a thin, flexible catheter is inserted into a vein or artery in the groin. The catheter is gently guided to the heart, where tiny wires called electrode catheters are inserted. “We identify the area that creates the arrhythmia. Then we apply energy in this area and terminate that arrhythmia,” he says. When the heart tissue that is causing the arrhythmia is located, radiofrequency energy is sent through the wires to destroy the small area of tissue. The rest of the heart is not damaged.

The first step in arrhythmia treatment is to talk to your doctor, Bogomilov says. “If you have a problem with your heart rhythm, the speed and pattern of your heartbeat, please consult your primary care provider or a cardiologist.”

To learn more or to make an appointment at Washington Regional Cardiovascular Clinic, call 479.463.8740 or click here.