The concept of cardiovascular disease is not new to people. Every year, millions of people succumb to heart disease all around the world. However, technological advancements continue to grapple with this challenge, and Watchman devices have been introduced. These are devices that have been designed to prevent stroke that results from cardiac-related conditions. In this article, we will delve into the Functionality of watchman device and how they reduce the risk of stroke.
Watchman Devices Basics:
Watchman devices are implantable devices introduced by Boston Scientific specifically to reduce the risk of stroke for patients with atrial fibrillation. They comprise a small, umbrella-shaped apparatus that is placed in your left atrial appendage (LAA) through minimally invasive procedures. The LAA is a pocket-shaped muscle in the heart where blood clots may form, and these clots are often associated with stroke. The device is meant to contain these blood clots and reduce the risk of stroke by about 90%.
Advantages of Watchman Devices:
One of the advantages of Watchman devices is that they do not require general anesthesia, thus making the procedure non-invasive. Also, the patient will be discharged from the hospital between one and two days, making it less demanding than other measures. Furthermore, once the Watchman device is in place, there is no need to go through the long-term use of anticoagulants like Warfarin or Coumadin.
The Watchman Device Procedure:
Before the surgical procedure, there are many things that the doctor will need to discuss with the patient. One of these things is to confirm if a Watchman Device is the best alternative for stroke prevention. The doctor will then discuss the procedures involved as well as the risks involved. The Watchman procedure can take approximately 30-40 minutes.
Once the patient’s Ascending Aorta is passed via a catheter that is inserted via the femoral vein, the Watchman Device will be inserted into the left atrial appendage through a tiny incision in your groin. The steady-state of blood clots formation in LAA verifies that the LAA is closed and blood flows smoothly through the heart. The process is not considered painful and does not produce any vibration or bodily harm.
Watchman Device Risks:
As with every medical procedure, there is some level of risk involved with Watchman Devices. Some of the minor risks are bruising or bleeding at the wound site, inflammation, and difficulty in removing the device in future procedures. More serious risks include cardiac perforation, which may cause bleeding around your heart, and blood clotting. It is essential to discuss with your physician before deciding to go for the Watchman procedure and to clarify all of your inquiries and worries.
After the Watchman procedure, patients are usually kept in the hospital for one or two days before being discharged. They are encouraged to arm themselves with healthy lifestyle practices that will increase their recovery as they might experience considerable bruising, making physical activity temporarily uncomfortable. They should avoid smoking, excessive alcohol intake, and caffeinated substances. It is also crucial for the patient to have a follow-up evaluation with their cardiologist to confirm how long they would have to include antiplatelet medication, such as aspirin or Plavix, in their regimen.
In conclusion, Watchman Devices are extraordinary gadgets designed to reduce the risk of stroke for persons with atrial fibrillation. The device comes with little risk and minimal medical intervention, thereby making it a sound alternative to other treatments. It is essential to note that every medical procedure has its risks, but the Watchman procedure guarantees a safer, less invasive, and faster recovery process. Patients who have received Watchman Devices often report their satisfaction with the procedure and significant reductions in the frequency of their cardiac problems.
If you have atrial fibrillation, then the Watchman procedure might be your best chance for applying preventive measures against stroke. Reach out to a qualified medical practitioner and ask any inquiries you may have concerning this device and the procedure.