Medtronic has received both US and European regulatory approvals to introduce the new Arctic Front Advance ST Cryoablation Catheter for treating paroxysmal atrial fibrillation.
Paroxysmal atrial fibrillation is an episode of uncoordinated movement of the atria that occurs occasionally and then stops.
According to the company, the device features a 40% shorter tip designed to makes it easier to assess the ablation with the company's Achieve Mapping Catheter. In addition, the shorter tip allows more assured access through difficult pulmonary vein architecture.
The catheter uses cooling as the ablation mechanism, as opposed to radiofrequency heat sources that are commonly used these days.
Initial patients received treatment using the device at the Asklepios Klinik St. Georg in Hamburg, Germany.
Cryoballoon technology is associated with shorter procedure times than point-by-point radiofrequency ablation.
"The technology is better than drug therapies on the market. The Arctic Front Advance System has been shown to improve quality of life for patients and significantly reduce paroxysmal (sporadic) atrial fibrillation symptoms, with patients experiencing reduction in atrial fibrillation episodes, palpitations, fatigue, rapid heartbeat, swelling, and syncope, and has become a widely adopted treatment for atrial fibrillation," Medtronic said in a press release.