Northwestern 1st in US to use 3D device that offers images from inside the heart

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Cardiologists at Chicago-based Northwestern Medicine have become the first in the U.S. to use a 3D intracardiac echo device to treat a patient with heart arrhythmia. 

The VeriSight Pro ICE catheter was used during a cryoablation procedure. It uses soundwaves to develop real-time images from inside the heart. Standard transthoracic echocardiograms are performed on the chest's surface, and are unable to provide views of certain areas in the heart. Transesophageal echocardiograms, which are performed through the esophagus, typically require patients to undergo general anesthesia, while this method does not. 

Bradley Knight, MD, medical director of cardiac electrophysiology and director of Northwestern's heart rhythm center, who worked with Philips to create the device, was the first to use it. 

"While most echocardiography is done from outside the heart, or via the esophagus, this is a small device that can be placed inside the heart chambers, during the procedure, providing us real-time images of the heart’s blood flow and structures, the interventional tools being navigated within the heart, and some areas of the heart that are difficult to view through more traditional echocardiography,” Dr. Knight said in a July 20 news release. 

In addition to cryoablation procedures, the technology is meant for a range of electrophysiology and structural heart disease procedures.

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