Radio frequency to help treat heart disorders

RAS AL KHAIMAH — The RAK Hospital has introduced new age radio frequency (RF) technology to treat patients with heart rhythm disorders.

By Sebugwaawo Ismail

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Published: Thu 19 Aug 2010, 12:26 AM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 11:12 AM

According to Dr Rajeev Lochan, head of Cardiology Department and Cath lab at the RAK Hospital, this is the first time such a facility is being introduced in the northern emirates on regular basis with full time trained staff.

“Heart rhythm disorders present with very uncomfortable symptoms. These include palpitation due to a missed or extra heart beat, or severe palpitation and even fainting, dizziness or sudden death,” said Dr Lochan.

He noted that patients with heart problems in the northern emirates could now visit RAK Hospital’s cardiology department for easy treatment.

“Heart rhythm disorders are not only uncomfortable but also affect the patients’ ability to perform their day-to-day activities and may even affect those around them. If such patients experience severe dizziness during driving or operating machinery, they may harm themselves or others around them. Such patients are unfit for several professions like pilot, railway coach drivers and heavy machine operators,” said Dr Lochan.

He added that the treatment not only relieved discomfort but improved the efficiency of the patient and safety of others around them. The doctor cited the case of a 50-year-old worker who was sent to a government hospital’s emergency section after experiencing palpitation and dizziness while on work.

The worker was immediately diagnosed with SVT (Supra Ventricular Tachycardia or rapid heart rate) after recording his pulse and blood pressure. ECG confirmed the diagnosis and the case was managed efficiently by duty doctor in the government hospital.

“The patient was later brought to RAK Hospital for further evaluation and long term management of the problem. He was investigated by EP (Electrophysiology) study and ECG was recorded from within the heart chambers. This confirmed the diagnosis of double electrical connection with AV node situated between upper and lower chambers of heart. The extreme slow speed of conduction in additional channel was deactivated by RF waves within the heart guided by recording of ECG on a specialised computer,” explained Dr Lochan who carried out the treatment.

He said that the test later indicated that the problem was solved and now the worker would not require strong medications. He is now safe to run machinery or automobiles without any risk to others. Two more such patients have been treated with specialised EP equipment acquired by RAK Hospital.

EP conduction study is also used to confirm the diagnosis of intermittent bradycardia or slow heartbeat rate due to heart block and helps in determination of the correct treatment like pacemaker implantation.

“The combined success rate of such procedures is 96-98 per cent. Rarely do patients develop this problem again, only less than two out of 100 patients. The repeat procedure in such failed patients is almost 100 per cent success. The advancement has extended the use of EP and RF in other form of irregularity of pulse like atrial flutter, atrial fibrillation, and selected form of ventricular tachycardia arising from right ventricular outflow, frequent ectopic or tachycardia,” said Dr Rajeev Lochan.

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