Interview with Carey Kimmelstiel, M.D., FACP, FACC, director, cardiac catheterization laboratory, director, interventional cardiology, Tufts Medical Center, and professor of medicine at Tufts University School of Medicine. He explains how septal ablation to is used to treat hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). The Tufts Medical Center HCM program is the largest in New England.
Tufts Medical Center performs septal ablation to treat medication-refractory HCM. They use a heart team approach to determine which patients are best served by surgical septal myectomy or alcohol septal ablation.
When drug treatments are ineffective, the center offers several procedures to treat HCM:
• Implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs)to prevent sudden cardiac death in high risk patients.
• Surgical septal myectomy for patients who experience significant limitation during physical activity and are unresponsive to medical drug treatment. This operation may be performed along with the Maze procedure to lessen the chances of recurrent atrial fibrillation.
• Alcohol septal ablation for patients who are generally not ideal candidates for the myectomy operation. This procedure takes place in the catheterization laboratory without general anesthesia, and mimics the beneficial effects of surgery.
• Ablation for recurrent atrial fibrillation performed in the catheterization laboratory to lessen the likelihood for additional episodes.
• Heart transplant for the some patients without obstruction who experience severe symptoms and are unresponsive to drug treatment.