OBJECTIVES - This study sought to assess long-term left atrial appendage (LAA) closure efficacy of the Atriclip applied via totally thoracoscopic (TT) approach with computed tomographic angiography.
BACKGROUND - LAA closure is associated with a low risk for atrial fibrillation-related embolic stroke. The Atriclip exclusion device allows epicardial LAA closure, avoiding the need for post-operative oral anticoagulation. Previous data with Atriclip during open chest procedures show a high efficacy rate of closure >95%.
METHODS - Three-dimensional volumetric 2-phase computed tomographic angiography ≥90 days post-implantation was independently assessed by chest radiology for complete LAA closure on all consented subjects identified retrospectively as having had a TT-placed Atriclip at Vanderbilt University Medical Center from June 13, 2011, to October 6, 2015.
RESULTS - Complete LAA closure (defined by complete exclusion of the LAA with no exposed trabeculations, and clip within 1 cm from the left circumflex artery) was found in 61 of 65 subjects (93.9%). Four cases had incomplete closure (6.2%). Two clips were placed too distally, leaving a large stump with exposed trabeculae. Two clips failed to address a secondary LAA lobe. No major complications were associated with TT placement of the Atriclip. Follow-up over 183 patient-years revealed 1 stroke in a patient with complete LAA closure and no thrombus (hypertensive cerebrovascular accident).
CONCLUSIONS - Angiographic LAA closure efficacy with a TT-placed Atriclip is high (93.9%). The clinical significance of a remnant stump is unknown. Confirmation of complete LAA occlusion should be made before cessation of systemic anticoagulation.
Copyright © 2017 American College of Cardiology Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.