An algorithm for improving tissue ablation accuracy in the treatment of atrial fibrillation

Value Proposition

Irregular and rapid heartbeat, commonly referred to as atrial fibrillation, is the most prevalent form of heart disease. The poor blood flow resulting from atrial fibrillation can cause short breath, weakness, and even stroke. The current best standard of care for treating atrial fibrillation is a procedure called catheter ablation, where small portions of heart tissue are destroyed to restore a regular heartbeat. Catheter ablation devices are a $3.5 billion global market. While overall this is a very successful treatment option, it is a specialized procedure requiring highly trained surgeons, and around 25% of patients need a second session to finish the ablation procedure. There is a need for technology to improve patient outcomes by simplifying catheter ablation procedures.


Duke researchers have invented a method for improving the accuracy of tissue destruction in order to better treat atrial fibrillation. This is a novel means of annotating the timing difference between two unipolar electrograms using the bipolar signal calculated by their difference. The purpose of this algorithm is to convert the amplitude of a given bipolar electrogram to the relative phase difference or time delay between its two component unipolar electrograms. Measurement of small-time delays between electrodes will allow determination of time delays between more closely spaced electrodes and improve the accuracy of further data transformations utilizing these data (e.g. conduction velocity calculation). This results in a technology with common mode noise reduction that does not require upsampling and allows for time differences below the sampling frequency to be measured. This method can be incorporated into clinical electroanatomic mapping systems for real-time intraprocedural guidance. Inventors have shown analytically and experimentally that this method has significantly improved temporal accuracy compared to the standard methods of local activation time annotation.


  • A single shot conduction velocity analysis for cardiac electrophysiology
  • Improves accuracy during tissue ablation procedures
  • Can be incorporated into existing clinical electroanatomic mapping systems for real-time intraprocedural guidance