Robotic Magnetic Navigation for Ablation

The Henry Ford Heart & Vascular Institute is one of the few centers in Michigan offering robotic magnetic navigation for cardiac ablation.

This advanced technology for treating arrhythmias allows us to reach more areas of your heart and gives our doctors greater precision.

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What is robotic magnetic navigation?

During traditional cardiac ablation, your doctor inserts thin tubes called catheters into a vein. The doctor then guides the catheters to your heart and applies energy to the spot causing the arrhythmia.

With robotic magnetic navigation:

  1. We place two large external magnets on either side of the treatment table.
  2. We insert a special catheter with a small magnet into a vein.
  3. With the help of a computer, we control the external magnets robotically.
  4. The magnets help us gently guide the catheter tip to the location of the arrhythmia inside your heart.
  5. We use the catheter to deliver radiofrequency energy, or heat, that safely targets the arrhythmia.

Advantages of robotic magnetic navigation for ablation

The benefits of robotic magnetic navigation include:

  • More treatment options: A softer, more flexible catheter and magnetic guidance allow us to reach more areas of the heart. This approach increases treatment options for even the most complex arrhythmias.
  • Reduced X-ray exposure: During an ablation, we use X-rays to guide catheters into place. The robotic magnetic navigation system gives the doctor greater control and more data. We need fewer X-rays, which greatly reduces your radiation exposure.
  • Greater precision: Robotic magnetic navigation gives us a more precise way to control the tip of the catheter throughout the procedure. We can make sure we’re pinpointing the source of the arrhythmia.
  • Better contact: During ablation, the catheter tip should continuously press against targeted heart tissue. But manual catheters aren’t completely stable and don’t achieve consistent pressure. The catheters for robotic magnetic navigation address this challenge with greater precision and flexibility. They make consistent, stable contact with the tissue throughout treatment.
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