Left Atrial Appendage Ligation (Atrial Clip)

Patients looking to reduce their risk of stroke or major bleeding events as well as stopping anticoagulant (blood thinner) medications may benefit from a minimally invasive left atrial appendage ligation procedure.

For people with atrial fibrillation, clots may form in a portion of the heart called the left atrial appendage. The atrial clip is a fabric coated metal device that closes off the left atrial appendage at its base. The atrial clip:

  • Closes off the left atrial appendage so no blood flow in or out is possible
  • Prevents/ significantly reduces strokes related to clots formed in the heart in patients with atrial fibrillation
  • Allows patients to stop taking blood thinners permanently
  • Reduces chance of a spontaneous bleeding complication (gastrointestinal, brain, nosebleed, etc.) or bleeding issue related to injury (sports, work, falls, etc.)
Who is the atrial clip procedure for?
  • Patients with atrial fibrillation and a need to avoid taking anticoagulants (blood thinners)
  • Patients wishing to stop taking blood thinning medications due to worry of risk of bleeding issues, or potential for hazard from their use (as in certain careers)
  • Patients with risk of injury from taking blood thinners due to activities (skiing, motorcycle riding, biking, etc.) or other medical conditions (neurodegenerative conditions & patients prone to falls)
  • Patients wishing to reduce their risk of stroke with chronic atrial fibrillation
How is the atrial clip different from other devices?
  • Persistent closure in over 97% of patients
  • Smaller residual left atrial appendage base/stump than other devices
  • Reduces strokes related to clots (other devices have not demonstrated this outcome)
  • Reduces strokes/complications from bleeding as patients are no longer taking blood thinners (other devices have only demonstrated this outcome)
  • No reports of clip migration, clot on the clip, leakage, or exposure to the bloodstream
  • If other devices fail patients stay on blood thinners indefinitely
  • The clip has also been shown to reduce electrical triggers of atrial fibrillation & the amount of atrial fibrillation episodes some patients experience

 

Placing of the atrial clip is a minimally invasive surgery.

  • The surgeon makes 2-3 small incisions in the left chest (incisions are 5-12mm in length)
  • The clip is placed on the left atrial appendage and secured in place
  • The surgery averages 25-30 minutes
  • Most patients have an overnight hospital stay