Device-less patent foramen ovale closure by radiofrequency thermal energy

Walpoth, Nazan B; Habermacher, Kathrin; Moarof, Igal; Watson, Sandy; Wahl, Andreas; Windecker, Stephan; Schönenberger, Christa; Meier, Bernhard (2008). Device-less patent foramen ovale closure by radiofrequency thermal energy. Swiss medical weekly, 138(7-8), pp. 108-13. Muttenz: EMH Schweizerischer Ärzteverlag

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The goal of this study was to assess the feasibility, safety and success of a system which uses radiofrequency energy (RFE) rather than a device for percutaneous closure of patent foramen ovale (PFO). METHODS: Sixteen patients (10 men, 6 women, mean age 50 years) were included in the study. All of them had a proven PFO with documented right-to-left shunt (RLS) after Valsalva manoeuvre (VM) during transoesophageal echocardiography (TEE). The patients had an average PFO diameter of 6 +/- 2 mm at TEE and an average of 23 +/- 4 microembolic signals (MES) in power M-mode transcranial Doppler sonography (pm-TCD), measured over the middle cerebral artery. An atrial septal aneurysm (ASA) was present in 7 patients (44%). Balloon measurement, performed in all patients, revealed a stretched PFO diameter of 8 +/- 3 mm. In 2 patients (stretched diameter 11 and 14 mm respectively, both with ASA >10 mm), radiofrequency was not applied (PFO too large) and the PFO was closed with an Amplatzer PFO occluder instead. A 6-month follow-up TEE was performed in all patients. RESULTS: There were no serious adverse events during the procedure or at follow-up (12 months average). TEE 6 months after the first RFE procedure showed complete closure of the PFO in 50% of the patients (7/14). Closure appeared to be influenced by PFO diameter, complete closure being achieved in 89% (7/8) with a balloon-stretched diameter < or =7 mm but in none of the patients >7 mm. Only one of the complete closure patients had an ASA. Of the remainder, 4 (29%) had an ASA. Although the PFO was not completely closed in this group, some reduction in the diameter of the PFO and in MES was documented by TEE and pm-TCD with VM. Five of the 7 residual shunt patients received an Amplatzer PFO occluder. Except for one patient with a minimal residual shunt, all showed complete closure of PFO at 6-month follow-up TEE and pm-TCD with VM. The other two refused a closure device. CONCLUSIONS: The results confirm that radiofrequency closure of the PFO is safe albeit less efficacious and more complex than device closure. The technique in its current state should not be attempted in patients with a balloon-stretched PFO diameter >7 mm and an ASA.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Cardiovascular Disorders (DHGE) > Clinic of Cardiology

UniBE Contributor:

Moarof, Igal; Wahl, Andreas; Windecker, Stephan and Meier, Bernhard






EMH Schweizerischer Ärzteverlag




Factscience Import

Date Deposited:

04 Oct 2013 15:02

Last Modified:

04 May 2014 23:18

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URI: (FactScience: 99367)

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