A study conducted by the researchers from JAMA confirms the success of treatment for persistent a trial fibrillation (A Fib) that combines the standard treatment, catheter ablation, with a separate infusion of ethanol, or alcohol, to the vein of Marshall.
It was designed by Miguel Valderrabano, M.D., division chief, cardiac electrophysiology, Houston Methodist and has been successfully used since 2008.
These findings were presented by him earlier this year, at the annual meeting for the American College of Cardiology.
An abnormal and irregular heart rhythm, which can lead to stroke, blood clots, and heart failure if left untreated, is referred as Atrial fibrillation.
As a treatment, catheter ablation uses electricity to reset the heartbeat. While effective in many patients, the procedure must be repeated multiple times to realize positive results.
The Vein of Marshall Ethanol for Untreated Persistent fibrillation (VENUS) trial enrolled 343 patients, with 155 of them receiving the mixture treatment. At the six and 12-month mark, 49 percent of these patients remained free from fibrillation .
At an equivalent interval, only 38 percent of patients who received catheter ablation alone had an equivalent results.
The prevalence of AFib were within the ranges from 2.7 million to six .1 million.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, AFib is the most normally diagnosed as arrhythmia.
A finding from the multi-center trial proves that the combination approach is an effective first-line treatment and could be incorporated as the standard of care.
It increases the chances for patients, of requiring only one procedure to return to health, eliminating the stress and worry that can accompany frequent surgical procedures.