Can Microwaves Be Used To Treat Heart Rhythm Problems?

Question: Can microwaves be used to treat heart rhythm problems, and how do they work?

Answer:Well, once again, microwaves are another technique for producing localized heating. And, once again, they have to be directed to a very precise location, and this is still investigational.

So the fundamental premise of all of the therapies for the ablation of selected heart rhythm disorders: there's radio frequency ablation, there's cryoablation, which is the cold, there is the laser, which is directed eventually to produce heat, and then there's the microwave.

And people are experimenting with these other techniques and they have not really achieved widespread acceptance of any sort. So, the only two techniques that are truly being used are the radio frequency ablation and the cryoablation.

The other techniques may have a small niche somewhere in the treatment of patients with specific heart rhythm disorders, but they haven't really achieved a substantial success and documented safety, which are two essential elements in the approval for any technique of ablation.