According to information from a new study that was reported on April 3 in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, the MitraClip device (used to treat mitral regurgitation) works just as well in patients that have AF.

In fact, the study’s lead author, Dr. Howard C. Herrmann from the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, told Reuters Health that “AF is a marker for more advanced disease and other patient co-morbidities. It is reassuring that MitraClip therapy did not appear to be any different in patients with or without AF.”

For the study, Herrmann and his colleagues monitored 264 participating patients who had the MitraClip placed percutaneously as a treatment for mitral regurgitation, or traditional surgical repair. Of those patients, 72 of them had a pre-existing condition of AF. What the researchers discovered was that “acute procedural success rates, procedural time, device time and number of clips implanted were similar in MitraClip patients with and without AF.”

It turns out that after 12 months passed, mitral regurgitation’s reduction to grade 2+ or lower occurred more with the surgery than with the MitraClip; however, there wasn’t any interaction between the rhythm and the reduction in regurgitation. There was no difference between AF patients and non-AF patients from the all-cause mortality rates and mitral valve surgery.

“There is a new MitraClip study that will start soon to compare MitraClip to medical management in extreme risk (inoperable) patients with ischemic mitral regurgitation,” Herrmann said. “AF is likely to (be) common in these subjects as it was found in our study to be associated with more advanced valvular disease and non-cardiac co-morbidities.”

Herrmann is currently hoping that this study will provide enough proof to the FDA to grant the MitraClip approval in improving regurgitation in AF patients. This therapy is already approved for this purpose in Europe. Another treatment that is used to treat AF patients is the anticoagulant Multaq, which has been linked to liver failure and a worsening of the heart condition. Some patients have even died during studies conducted on Multaq, making it the last-ditch medication for most doctors when seeking the right prescription to offer AF patients.

If you have developed liver failure or a worsening of your heart condition after taking Multaq, contact an experienced Multaq attorney like Greg Jones for a free consultation. I am experienced at fighting Multaq lawsuits and may be able to help you recover money for your injuries.