Stopper Method First Applied in Denizli at PAU Hospital


A team consisting of Prof. Dr. I. Doğu Kılıç, Dr. İpek Büber, Dr. Işık Tekin, Dr. Gürsel Şen and Dr. Yiğit Davutoğlu performed appendix closure with the stopper method for the first time in Pamukkale University Hospitals in Denizli for 2 patients who could not use blood thinners and therefore were at risk of stroke due to clots.

 Prof. Dr. Doğu Kılıç from Cardiology department stated that the risk of heart-related stroke can be reduced with non-surgical stopper application and made statements:

What is stroke due to heart rhythm disorders?

An important cause of strokes is a heart rhythm disorder called "atrial fibrillation". In this rhythm disorder, the blood flow in the atria of the heart slows down, which can cause clot formations, especially in a recess in the left atrium. If these clots move to the brain vessels and block the vessels there, it may result in a stroke. Unfortunately, atrial fibrillation is a common disease that increases with age, and increases the risk of stroke by 5 times when it develops.

Is it possible to prevent stroke?

Prevention of this situation is possible with blood thinners. Until recently, a drug called warfarin (coumadin, warfmadin...), which was relatively difficult to use, was the only treatment option that could be used for this purpose. However, new drugs have made it easier for patients to use blood thinners. Despite these developments, a group of patients cannot receive anticoagulant treatment due to various reasons. The most common reason for this is recurrent bleeding in patients. In these patients, the risk of clotting can be reduced by plugging the recess in the left atrium called appendix with a stopper.

How is the procedure done?

The procedure can be performed without surgery by our clinic at Pamukkale University Hospital. For the procedure, the device in the form of a stopper is placed here by entering through the right groin, reaching the right atrium and then the appendix in the left atrium. After the device is placed, the contact of this indentation with the blood is cut off, and as the body covers the device over time, a clot is prevented from forming and spreading to various parts of the body. The procedure takes about 1 hour and patients are usually discharged the next day.

Is this procedure suitable for everyone?

We do not apply this method to every patient with arrhythmia. After we are sure that the patients will not really be able to take blood thinners, we evaluate the suitability of the patient with imaging methods. As with any intervention, the selection of the patient who will benefit is very important.

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