Epicardial ablation of ventricular tachycardia is a relatively new technique for ablating abnormal heart rhythms that originate close to or on the surface of the heart (epicardium). In most cases VT originates from abnormal heart tissue that lies on the inner surface or in the middle of the heart muscle so ablation from the inside is successful. Occasionally the abnormal heart tissue is near the outer surface and so ablating the outer surface can be more successful. The procedure is performed by introducing the ablation catheter via a small puncture in the skin into the space around the surface of the heart. The puncture is usually located at the lower end of the breastbone. In most cases ablation is also performed on the inside of the heart so a dual approach is used.
- Dr Michael GriffithMike Griffith is one of the most experienced heart rhythm consultants in the UK. He trained at Cambridge (Trinity Hall) and St Thomas’s London graduating in 1981. He gained his MD investigating the Diagnosis and Treatment of Ventricular Tachycardia in 1990. » Read More
This is a general term that describes some of the procedures that we perform. Ablation is the process that modifies small parts of the heart muscle that are responsible for the abnormal heart rhythms or palpitations. Usually this is done by heating the area using radiofrequency at the end of a catheter that is placed in contact with the heart muscle.