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Health Care Innovators
Jax Daily Record Wednesday, Sep. 21, 202212:00 AM EST

Ascension St. Vincent’s: Treatments to reduce stroke, heart failure risk

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Northeast Florida health care systems share some of the ways they are innovating to improve patient treatment and care.
by: Dan Macdonald Staff Writer

Ascension St. Vincent’s said that notable medical innovations have come in its heart program, specifically within research and clinical trials.

Ascension St. Vincent’s said it was one of the first sites in the world and the first in Florida to enroll patients in a clinical trial called CHAMPION-AF. The program is examining the WATCHMAN device as a potential first-line therapy for reducing stroke risk in patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation.

One of the trial’s goals is to see if the procedure can eliminate the use of blood thinners.

The hospital also is enrolling patients in a clinical trial for an artificial intelligence-based software that helps treat persistent, drug-resistant atrial fibrillation. Atrial fibrillation is an irregular heartbeat that can lead to more serious health issues, including heart failure and stroke.

Ascension St. Vincent’s Riverside was one of the first three hospitals in the U.S. to enroll patients in the trial, which is examining the effectiveness of the Volta Medical VX1 software to help treat cardiac arrhythmias. The software analyzes electrical signals in patients undergoing ablation for their atrial fibrillation and helps cardiologists identify heart abnormalities in real time during the procedure.

During an ablation, a doctor inserts catheters through the blood vessels into the heart to burn or freeze the tissue that is causing abnormal electrical signals in the upper chamber, or atrium. The procedure creates scarring to restore a normal heartbeat.

Ascension St. Vincent’s Riverside said it was the first hospital in Jacksonville to receive the American College of Cardiology Transcatheter Valve Certification, which recognizes the commitment to treating patients undergoing transcatheter valve repair and replacement procedures.

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