Catheter Ablation | AVNRT Ablation

It is possible to burn away (ablate) AVNRT in most people leading to a permanent cure. This, like any other ablation, involves passing a catheter whose end can be heated into the heart, usually via a vein at the top of the leg. The slow pathway is then located and burnt away. Usually AVNRT can be cured at the first attempt in 90-95% of people. If it returns, more attempts can be made. As with any other invasive procedure there are risks although these are small. Fortunately complications only occur in about 1% of patients. The most important risk is that of damaging the AV node itself. In this situation electricity can not spread form the atria to the ventricles and the patient requires a pacemaker. Although this is not ideal, especially in a young person, it is by no means ‘the end of the world’. Other risks, damaging the vein at the top of the leg through which the catheters are passed, blood leaks around the heart etc. are extremely rare. After the ablation patients need to lie flat for a few hours to let the holes in the veins close up. Often patients will be watched overnight and if an ECG is fine the following day, discharged. Some patients notice occasional skips and jumps in the heart or a slightly faster pulse for the first few weeks after the procedure, however these always settle.

Catheter Ablation


London bridge hospital