At St. John’s Hospital Camarillo, a tube, a balloon and the rhythm of life

St.John's Cryoablation team gathered in operating room

Atrial fibrillation, an irregular and often rapid heartbeat that can lead to blood clots in the heart, has been linked to a nearly 400% higher risk of developing a stroke. Also known as AFib, it is the most common type of irregular heart rhythm. Treatment options typically include medications, lifestyle changes, and procedures like cardioversion or ablation.

St. John’s Hospital Camarillo of Camarillo, Calif., recently became the first hospital in southern California and the second in the state to pioneer a groundbreaking new treatment for AFib that is as effective as it is minimally invasive. Medical staff from St. John’s and the affiliated St. John’s Regional Medical Center used the POLARx cryoablation system, which restores normal heart rhythm by disabling heart cells that create an irregular heartbeat.

During this minimally invasive procedure, a thin flexible tube called a balloon catheter is used to locate and freeze the heart tissue that triggers an irregular heartbeat.

“Being the first hospital in Southern California to be using this new system enables our electrophysiology team to be leaders in an innovative technology that successfully treats such a prevalent cardiac condition,” said Barry Wolfman, president and CEO of St. John’s Hospitals.