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What is the role of surgery in the treatment of atrial fibrillation ?

What is the role of surgery in the treatment of atrial fibrillation ?

• A novel surgical technique, the Maze procedure, has recently been described in which multiple
incisions are made in the atria to prevent re-entrant loops (Clin Curdiol 1991; 14:827 34). This
procedure is highly effective in preventing atrial fibrillation: only one patient out of 65 suffered a
clinical recurrence of the arrhythmia three or more months after the procedure. Although the
long-term outcome is not known, it remains a promising procedure when atrial fibrillation is not
controlled by medical therapy or in those cases complicated by recurrent thromboembolism.

• The 'corridor' procedure effectively isolates both the left and right atrium, leaving a strip of
myocardium connecting the sinus node to the atrioventricular node. This procedure does not prevent
atrial fibrillation but isolates the fibrillating atria. Although a 70% 'cure' rate is reported, sequential
atrioventricular contraction is not res…

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