Austin, Texas-based St. David’s Medical Center physicians were among the first in the U.S. to implant the Barostim System, a new neurostimulator technology used to help treat advanced heart failure, the hospital said Dec. 9.
The system features a programmable device placed under the patient’s collarbone, sending electrical pulses to baroreceptors, which detect pressure changes in the carotid artery. This triggers the baroreflex, the body’s main cardiovascular reflex, causing an involuntary response to the heart. In turn, balance is restored to the autonomic nervous system and reduces symptoms of heart failure.
Andrea Natale, MD, cardiac electrophysiologist and executive medical director of the Texas Cardiac Arrhythmia Institute at St. David’s Medical Center, said the therapy improves patients’ quality of life, including those who remain symptomatic while on medications.