Heart & Vascular Center takes part in atrial fibrillation stroke prevention study

Cardiologist Jacob Dutcher, M.D., and a team of heart experts including cardiologists Wade Schmidt and Mevan Wijetunga from the CentraCare Heart & Vascular Center at St. Cloud Hospital performed two catheter-based procedures on patients enrolled in a new clinical trial that evaluates stroke prevention in patients with atrial fibrillation (AF). The Amplatzer™ Cardiac Plug from St. Jude Medical, an investigational device that prevents blood clots from leaving the left atrial appendage, was implanted in two AF patients who qualified for the trial.

An estimated 2.3 million Americans have AF, which is one of the most common causes of stroke. The trial will compare the safety and effectiveness of the device to traditional medical treatment.

As one of Minnesota’s largest heart hospitals, the CentraCare Heart & Vascular Center is one of few sites in the state with a department dedicated to heart research. Heart research gives patients early access to new drugs and treatments and plays a role in the discovery of new drugs, treatments and cures. Research helps to prevent, diagnose and treat heart disease to improve patients lives.

The Heart & Vascular Center is participating in 34 clinical trials involving 400+ patients. For more information about this clinical trial, call Heidi Harris, R.N., at 320-251-2700, ext. 54465.