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What are the chances of a third heart ablation being successful?

If one (age 68) has had 2 unsuccessful heart ablations in the past year, what are the chances of a 3rd more extensive one (possibly using freezing technique) being successful if he seems to have gone into more persistent A-Fib? What are the pros and cons of doing the 3rd ablation? Which is more serious: A-Fib or A-Flutter?

submitted by Nancy from Houston, Texas on 3/8/2013


by Texas Heart Institute cardiologist, Ali Massumi, MD     

Ali Massumi, MDFreezing technique does not provide any advantage over radiofrequency technique (RF), especially in cases of persistent A Fib. Long-term success from a third procedure is about 50%. I recommend doing the procedure in places with a lot of experience.         

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Updated March 2013
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