Central Florida Regional Hospital is the only hospital in Seminole County offering cardiac patients an alternative to long-term blood thinner medication with the Left Atrial Appendage Closure (LAAC) device.

The LAAC device is a permanent heart implant that effectively reduces the risk of stroke in patients suffering from non-valvular atrial fibrillation (AFIB). AFIB is an irregular heartbeat experienced by at least 2.7 million Americans who are five times more likely to suffer from a stroke.

AFIB can lead to blood clots, stroke, heart failure and other heart-related complications. AFIB patients usually use anticoagulants (blood thinners) long-term to prevent blood clots from forming. After the LAAC device is implanted, patients can discontinue the use of long-term blood thinner medication, reducing the risk of bleeding.

Compared to anticoagulants, the LAAC device demonstrates statistically superior reductions in conditions such as:

  • Hemorrhagic stroke (85 percent reduction)
  • Disabling stroke (63 percent reduction)
  • Cardiovascular death (56 percent reduction)

More than 90 percent of stroke-causing clots that come from the heart form in the left atrial appendage. The LAAC device is implanted with a one-time, minimally invasive procedure via the groin. Following the procedure, patients are typically discharged within 24 hours and can be taken off anticoagulants in 30-45 days