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GwenWolf, March 15,  2018  2:10pm EST

Need recommendations for electrophysiologist . . . within Kaiser network

My husband is an AFib.  We  live in the San Francisco area.  We had ablation surgery scheduled for last week.  We had a phone conversation with the surgeon two days before and he informed us that my husband would be subjected to 25 MINUTES of radiation (x-rays).  We asked him how the patient was protected and he said they aren't. . . but the staff wears lead shields.  He said they use the 3D mapping, so I don't understand why they still use that much radiation.  I guess I can assume that this surgeon is not as seasoned as another surgeon that uses less radiation. He said he performs about 80 surgeries, annually.  But, almost 1/2 hr. of radiation is unacceptable.  I understand that this is heart surgery and accuracy is critical, but, that much radiation could be a life changer in the not-so-far future.

Can someone please share any information on a 'seasoned' electrophysiologist that uses minimal radiation to perform Afib ablation,  and hopefully within the Kaiser Network. . . we will travel anywhere in the US to get this procedure done. . . it would be worth travelling for a surgeon that can do it right the first time with less radiation exposure.

3 Replies
  • masheely
    masheely, March 16,  2018  6:04am EST
    Please let me know what you find out. I will be changing insurance to Kaiser soon and will need my ablation through Kaiser. My cardiologist is in San Leandro, but I have gone to Santa Clara for procedures. I am willing to travel as well and pay longer cobra for the right doctor. When I had my stents I was with Kaiser, but now I have a different insurance and go through Stanford. I will be back to Kaiser soon.
  • MAC
    MAC, March 16,  2018  7:24am EST
    I had an ablation in April 2017 at Kaiser in Los Angeles (on Sunset Blvd).  Dr. Doris is the EP who performed the procedure—I was terrified going in but after 3-6 months of R&R I was OK.  So far so good.  He is a great physician who took time to speak with me a few weeks after the surgery to reassure me that I was on track to full recovery.  His team and staff were wonderful.  I would seek him out again if needed.  I’m free of afib now and on Metoprolol 12.5 mg 2x day and Pradaxa 2x daily.  I take magnesium daily — which he agreed might be helpful.  He also referred me to sleep study as he suspected I might have sleep apnea—and I did!  He thinks it might have a link to my afib condition.  Do all in all—a terrific doctor and a good outcome for me.
  • GwenWolf
    GwenWolf, March 17,  2018  5:04am EST
    Hi, Mac,Thx for the information.  Did you have Cryo or RF?   My husband had SVT surgery a few years ago, now he has 'flutters' alongside the 'Afib'.  I  know they say they are all 'separate' issues, but I wonder. . . . .From what I am understanding, RF can be more accurate, given you have a 'seasoned' surgeon.  Cryo is faster and easier for both doc and patient.  I believe the more 'inexperienced electgrophysiologists' go for the Cryo and mega doses of radiation.
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