Background: In most patients with atrial fibrillation (AF) and stroke, there is thrombotic embolization from the left atrial appendage (LAA). Percutaneous closure of the LAA is a novel alternative for the treatment of patients with AF at a high risk of stroke, in whom long-term anticoagulation therapy is not possible or not desired. This study details the initial experience with the Amplatzer Cardiac Plug (ACP) in humans.
Methods: Investigator-initiated retrospective preregistry data collection to evaluate procedural feasibility and safety up to 24 hr after implantation of the ACP, a nitinol device designed for percutaneous trans-septal implantation in LAA of patients with paroxysmal, permanent, or persistent AF.
Results: In 137 of 143 patients, LAA occlusion was attempted, and successfully performed in 132 (96%). There were serious complications in 10 (7.0%) patients (three patients with ischemic stroke; two patients experienced device embolization, both percutaneously recaptured; and five patients with clinically significant pericardial effusions). Minor complications were insignificant pericardial effusions in four, transient myocardial ischemia in two, and loss of the implant in the venous system in one patient.
Conclusion: The implantation of the ACP device is a feasible method for percutaneous occlusion of the LAA.
Copyright © 2011 Wiley-Liss, Inc.