London Bridge Hospital is the first private hospital in the UK to offer the innovative first generation Sensei™ Robotic Catheter System (also known as the Hansen Robot) within the Cardiology Department.
This system is designed to give surgeons accurate and stable control of catheter movement during complex cardiac procedures performed to diagnose patients suffering from abnormal heart rhythms or arrhythmias.
Arrhythmias, or electrical problems of the heart, affect millions of people each year. These are characterised as occurring either in the atria (upper chambers of the heart), or in the ventricles (lower chambers of the heart).
A common form of arrhythmia, Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a complex arrhythmia in which the atria or upper chambers of the heart beat rapidly and irregularly. As a result, the ventricles or lower chambers never adequately fill with blood, and blood pools in the atria increasing the risk of stroke.
Of all the arrhythmias, AF is the most common. AF is a growing problem worldwide, affecting over 4.5 million people in Europe alone. One of the results of AF is inadequate blood flow to the body, concomitant with an increased potential for stroke, as the blood left in the atria pools and forms clots that can dislodge and travel to the brain.
According to the American College of Cardiology (ACC) approximately 75,000 strokes occur each year as a result of AF and these numbers continue to escalate as the population grows older.
Minimally-invasive treatment of arrhythmias:
- One method of treating arrhythmias is to destroy the cells that are causing the heart to beat irregularly using a catheter placed in specific locations inside the heart. This is called catheter ablation. Radiofrequency energy is the most common energy source used to eliminate the abnormal heart beats.
- As a precursor to treating the arrhythmia, the physician creates an electrical road map of the inside of the heart to help guide the placement of the ablation catheter. This road map is created by placing a catheter that records electrical signals from various locations in the heart. This catheter is called a mapping catheter.
- The most important element in the mapping and ablation phase is to place the catheters in the correct location of the heart so that an accurate map is created and only the abnormal tissue is destroyed.
The new Sensei system from Hansen Medical™ is designed to facilitate minimally invasive catheter-based procedures in the heart by providing our physicians with more control over catheter placement during these procedures. The overall aim of our new Sensei system is to help our consultants to create more accurate maps and therefore improve treatment of our patients.