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St. Luke's Emergency Department

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Pediatric Urgent Care - Cedar Rapids

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Urgent Care - Anamosa

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Urgent Care - Hiawatha

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WATCHMAN FOR AFib

One-time procedure that may reduce stroke risk for a lifetime in people with AFib

Watchman — Also known as the atrial appendage closure. This procedure is appropriate for patients at risk of developing clots in the left atrium and may reduce a patient’s risk of stroke and eliminate the need to take blood-thinning medication.

Atrial fibrillation, or AFib, is a common heart rhythm irregularity that can cause blood clots, increasing your risk of stroke, heart failure, and other heart-related complications. Blood-thinning medications like warfarin can help reduce the risk of stroke. But some patients cannot take warfarin because they are at high risk of bleeding. 

The Watchman is a small device placed in the part of the heart where clots are most likely to form. The device acts as a barrier to keep clots from entering the bloodstream. Physicians implant the Watchman through a catheter inserted in the leg, similar to inserting a stent. 

Mohit Chawla, MD, electrophysiologist with St. Luke’s Hospital – Cardiology has been implanting the Watchman device at St. Luke’s since 2016.