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New Cardiovascular Technologies will Improve and Save Lives of Georgian Patients

Tbilisi hosted the International Educational Conference and Master-Classes in “Present and Future Developments in The Management of Complex Tachyarrhythmias” for electrophysiologists and general cardiologists.

The event was organized with the support of the European and Georgian Heart Rhythm Associations, and the global leader in medical technologies, Medtronic, in Radisson Blu Iveria Hotel.

During the conference the President of the Georgian Heart Rhythm Association Mr. Giorgi Papiashvili, the members of the European Heart Rhythm Association, the Profesor del Departamento de Medicina Professor from Spain Mr. Josep Brugada presented the latest achievements in treatment of complex cardio vascular diseases.

“Georgia is among the countries where cardiovascular diseases are the number one cause of death with arrhythmia playing a leading role. Cardiovascular diseases cause more deaths in Georgia than any other diseases combined. The latest cardiovascular technologies brought to our country and advanced training and educational programs for our physicians will offer patients highly advanced treatments for cardio vascular diseases, while also broadening local access to new levels of cardio vascular expertise.

Profesor del Departamento de Medicina Professor from Spain Mr. Josep Brugada

Present and Future Developments in The Management of Complex Tachyarrhythmias

Can you please describe some of the advantages of the new AF therapies?

Well, AF therapies have evolved over the last two decades, since the very beginning of the late 90s, where we started doing ablation in patients with atrial fibrillation, we have increased the tools and developed tools that are now very useful for our patients. Most recent one is cryoablation. Cryoablaiton is, as demonstrated, a big interest in paroxysmal atrial fibrillation, but it is through those other techniques – mapping techniques and different sorts of catheters we have developed, which makes atrial fibrillation very successful and very safe at the present time.

Can you also talk about the benefits from the planned masterclasses that Georgia can expect?

Well, first of all, it really is a pleasure to be here in Georgia, for the symposium. I have been invited by Dr. Papashvili, who is the president of the Georgian Heart Rhythm Association, he is a fellow of mine, one of the people who was trained in Barcelona with me ten years ago, and now he’s president of the association. And so for me it is a pleasure to be here. And I am sure that all the master classes and the whole symposium will be of great interest to all the general cardiologists,  and also to all electrophysiologists and arrythmologists in Georgia. it will hopefully increase the interest of the Georgian cardiology in invasive electrophysiology and we can cure the majority of the patients with arrythimias.

Robert Hatala, Cardiologist

Can you talk about the specific benefits that Georgian professionals will gain from these master classes, and what some of their general goals are?

First of all, I would like to say that this is not my first time in Georgia, I have been here in your beautiful country three years ago, and I return with great pleasure. One of the reasons is also that my colleagues here in Georgia achieved dramatic success in the last maybe 10 years. You have excellent specialists who were educated and they performed really high quality medicine.

This symposium is basically aimed to reach the general cardiologists and to underline the high importance of treating cardiac arrhythmias today. Why? Because cardiac arrhythmias constitute a major part of cardiovascular deaths, up to 30% of all cardiovascular deaths are due to arrhythmias, and so in order to advance cardiology in general in your country, treating arrhythmias is an integral part. I believe that there are several targets during this symposium, and one of the targets is therapy of prevention of sudden cardiac deaths.

The sudden cardiac death is a major issue all over the world, all over Europe, the European Heart Rhythm association has started ten years ago an initiative, which was called implantable defibrillator for life, ICD for life. I believe this is a very important part of our efforts. I believe that modern therapy of arrhythmias is not experimental therapy. It’s a therapy which was very strong evidence, is very strongly evidence-based, and achievements are really remarkable. So it would for my understanding excellent, if all these possibilities for modern medicine would be also implemented in the healthcare policy of your country, which covers things like awareness among the physicians – this is what we are going to do today here – but also you have to create some economical basis for that, and this is via imbursement of these therapies.

And so people who have survived sudden cardiac deaths, which were very lucky to survive sudden cardiac deaths, because they were successfully resuscitated, and the proportion of these people is very low, it’s below 5%. So these people absolutely need a device that will protect them against recurrence of the arrhythmia in the future. So if we could together with our colleagues here in Georgia achieve this, I would be very happy.

The President of the Georgian Heart Rhythm Association Mr. Giorgi Papiashvili

According to Giorgi Papiashvili, heart arrhythmias are one of the leading causes of death from cardiovascular diseases. Consequently, he thinks that such symposium is very important. In addition, he believes that survival rates in patients with heart disease could be significantly improved with the availability of medical technologies and appropriate treatment:

“It is very important that the population and doctors are more informed about complicated arrhythmias and modern methods of treatments. The absolute majority of sudden deaths are caused by arrhythmias, which is not known to our population. Our conference serves to increase awareness towards this problem”.

Event provided excellent opportunity to bridge cross country experience in modern therapies for complex cardiovascular diseases, such as tachyarrhythmia; provided opportunity to discuss current global trends of cardiovascular diseases and contributed to greater networking among Georgian physicians and its international colleagues. , addressing the challenges and impact of the cardio vascular diseases in Georgia through strengthening national health system, bringing advanced technologies to the country, improving access to the latest therapies and helping to improve and save lives of many Georgian patients.