SOURCE: OR-Live, Inc.

June 09, 2008 07:15 ET

REMINDER: ORLive Presents: Paracardioscopic Ex-Maze Treatment for Long-Standing Atrial Fibrillation

Live Webcast: From FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital: June 9, 2008 at 5:00 PM EDT (21:00 UTC)

PINEHURST, NC--(Marketwire - June 9, 2008) - On Monday, June 9, 2008, at 5 p.m. Eastern Time, surgeons, cardiologists, other health care providers and patients are invited to join Andy C. Kiser, M.D., in a live panel presentation of the Paracardioscopic Ex-Maze procedure for the treatment of long-standing atrial fibrillation.

Dr. Kiser, in collaboration with a team of international surgeons, developed the Ex-Maze, which is a beating-heart, extra-cardiac maze procedure capable of causing spontaneous conversion to sinus rhythm (SR) during lesion creation.

Dr. Kiser will moderate the live webcast and will be joined by Professor Gerhard Wimmer-Greinecker, M.D., Ph.D. Professor Wimmer-Greinecker is professor of cardiac surgery at the JW-Goethe University, Frankfurt, Germany, and chairman of the Department for Cardiac and Thoracic Surgery at the Heart & Vascular Centre in Bad Bevensen in Northern Germany.

In fall 2007, Dr. Kiser and Professor Wimmer-Greinecker performed the world's first minimally invasive Ex-Maze procedure.

Dr. Kiser and Professor Wimmer-Greinecker will be joined by a patient who has recently undergone the Paracardioscopic Ex-Maze procedure with great success.

For many years, the "gold standard" for a-fib treatment has been a surgical procedure called the Cox Maze, which requires opening the chest, stopping the heart, cutting it into sections and sewing it back together. Dr. Kiser has led the development of a new version of the Cox Maze.

Called the Ex-Maze, the procedure creates an extensive pattern of scar tissue on the heart's surface and controls the heart's abnormal electrical impulses without the complexity of similar procedures. Initially, Dr. Kiser performed the Ex-Maze only on patients who were having some other type of open-chest procedure such as a coronary artery bypass. The minimally invasive Ex-Maze procedure is done through small incisions without opening the chest.

According to Dr. Kiser, a key challenge in the development of a minimally invasive epicardial, bi-atrial maze procedure on a beating heart is the creation of the lesions on the posterior region of the heart.

"By placing a small port in the abdomen through the diaphragm, one has direct access into the adjoining pericardial space and to the back of the heart," he says. "This new approach is called paracardioscopy, and is an essential part of a true minimally invasive procedure to treat atrial fibrillation. Combined with a similar small port access on the patient's right side, the surgeon has direct access to the entire backside of the heart. The ability to visualize the back of the heart allows the precise creation of complete conduction blocking patterns."

Dr. Kiser has begun teaching the minimally invasive Ex-Maze procedure to heart surgeons in such places as Sacramento, Calif.; Venice, Fla.; Cookeville, Tenn.; and Waco, Texas.

In January, Dr. Kiser was invited to make a presentation on the minimally invasive Ex-Maze at the national meeting of the American College of Cardiology in Chicago and will be presenting at the International Society for Minimally Invasive Cardiac Surgery in Boston in June. He has also been invited to speak at one of the largest cardiothoracic meetings in Europe, the 22nd annual meeting of the European Association for Cardio-Thoracic Surgery (EACTS) in Lisbon, Portugal. This presentation on the minimally invasive Ex-Maze will take place in September.

Atrial fibrillation (a-fib), which affects an estimated five million people, is the most common type of heart rhythm disturbance. It is the rapid, uncoordinated beating of the atria, the two upper chambers of the heart.

The atria quiver instead of beating in rhythm when the electrical impulses that cause them to contract travel through the heart in chaotic fashion. Some people with a-fib are severely debilitated by weakness, shortness of breath or pain. Others have no symptoms at all.

The Paracardioscopic Ex-Maze offers a-fib patients a new treatment alternative to the cut-and-sew Cox Maze.

To learn more and view a program preview visit:

Contact Information

  • Contact:
    Alex Fraser
    Director of Marketing
    860-953-2900 ex 214