When medications do not work in the treatment of atrial fibrillation (AFib), there are alternatives:
- Electrical cardioversion. This is a controlled procedure and is conducted under light anesthesia in the hospital, and you usually go home the day of the procedure.
- Catheter ablation
- The Maze procedure. This often requires open heart surgery because the clinician must make precise, small cuts (or possibly catheter burns) in specific places on the atria. The procedure’s name comes from the mazelike pattern of incisions made in the atria. Usually, the Maze procedure is performed only when open heart surgery is required for other reasons.