In the rhythmological department we examine and treat patients, who suffer from cardiac dysrhythmias (disordered action of the heart, DAH). DAH occurs with a variety of different acute and chronic – cardiac and non-cardiac – diseases and generates diverse symptoms. But also patients who are otherwise in good health might contract DAH. The electrophysiologically treated patients are either directly referred to the Schüchtermann-Klinik – by practising medical specialist, general practitioners or other hospitals – for diagnosis and therapy or they are already staying in our hospital as they had a heart surgery or a follow up treatment after a heart attack.
The target of the diagnosis is the detection and analysis of the cardiac dysrhythmia, the underlying disease and its respective degree of severity. For this purpose we not only take the medical history, examine the physical condition and apply the customary diagnostic methods but – most important – perform the electrophysiological examination (EPE) by means of a heart catheterisation.
ELECTROPHYSIOLOGICAL EXAMINATION (EPE)
The EPE is an examination of the electrical excitatory sequences of the heart. It is performed by applying several catheters for electrical stimulation at defined points of the heart. They serve to analyse the cardiac rhythm, to generate and conduct excitation and to stimulate the heart in a programmed fashion in order to trigger and analyse the induced cardiac dysrhythmia. For certain DAH the examination can directly be followed by a treatment, the so-called catheter ablation. For specific complex DAH the EPE and the catheter ablation will be made by means of three-dimensional methods. Here we have the CARTO™ system and the NavX/Ensite Precision™ system at our disposal.
The treatment is preferably targeted on a causal therapy, which means that the focus is on healing or alleviating the underlying disease and, if possible, initiating a specific therapy. For this purpose we provide not only pharmacological treatment methods but particularly also non-pharmacological and/or a combination of different methods.
COMBINATION OF DIFFERENT METHODS
- External cardioversion as a therapy for atrial fibrillation and atrial flutter
- Implantation of pacemakers to treat bradycardic DAH
- Implantation of automatic cardioverters and defibrillators (ICD) in documented or life-threatening DAH (ventricular fibrillation, ventricular tachycardia)
- Implantation of biventricular pacemakers or defibrillators in cases of severe cardiac insufficiency as a cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT)
- Catheter ablation with high-frequency current as a therapy for DAH
- Catheter ablation with cryo-energy for the “icing therapy” of HRS