Dr Begley and his colleagues at the Royal Papworth Hospital featured in a recent article focusing on their pioneering work in the Hunts Post. The local newspaper ran the story focused on the team performing a brand new procedure in the UK for the first time, read the article in full here. Dr Begley and the team performed pulsed field ablation for the first time in the UK.

UK’s First Pulsed Field Ablation

Dr David Begley and his consultant cardiologist colleagues Dr Claire Martin and Dr Patrick Heck performed the UK’s first atrial fibrillation ablation using a brand new innovative type of technology. Experts created the technology to help improve safety and efficiency.

Atrial fibrillation affects approximately 1.4 million people in the UK. It can lead to difficult symptoms and lifelong problems including breathlessness and chronic fatigue. The new procedure makes the atrial fibrillation ablation treatment more safe. It may also be suitable for a wider range of patients.

Catheter ablations are the most common form of treatment for atrial fibrillation. However, this new treatment takes things in a new direction. A company called Boston Scientific created the pioneering new technology, naming it FARAPULSE PFA. It uses a non-thermal electric field energy source to target heart tissue. It also limits potential damage to surrounding structures. Catheter ablations are usually successful. However, they have the risk of damaging surrounding tissue. Therefore, we are always looking for safer alternatives.

Early studies using FARAPULSE have been positive and report low complication rates.

FARAPULSE at the Royal Papworth Hospital

On June1 13th, Dr Begley and his colleagues supported by their wider team performed the first pulsed field ablation in the UK. The procedure saw the three consultants lead. Their supporting team included nurses, cardiac physiologists and radiographers.

Dr Begley’s colleague, Dr Martin commented: ““I am very proud of the team for making Royal Papworth Hospital the first centre in the UK to offer this technology to benefit our AF patients across the East of England. Thank you to everyone involved for their hard work in making this happen.”

The hospital will continue to play a leading role in new and emerging technologies for treating atrial fibrillation. It has already been selected as the lead centre in the UK for an upcoming research trial for Advantage-AF. This trial will collect further information on the effectiveness of this technique and help inform whether it can be rolled out further afield.