Health and Wellness,  Health and Wellness for People Over 50,  The Over 50 Lifestyle

WATCHMAN Device Offers Alternative to Common Blood Thinner

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This post was sponsored by Boston Scientific as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central. All opinions expressed in my post are 100% my own.

Have you or a loved one been diagnosed with non-valvular atrial fibrillation? The Boston Scientific WATCHMAN™ Left Atrial Appendage Closure Device offers a solution for many who need an alternative to lifelong use of blood thinners. Atrial fibrillation not caused by a heart valve problem (or non-valvular AFib) often requires the use of blood thinners for stroke risk reduction. Blood thinners can put the patient at risk for bleeding. If you are like me, you have a loved one who suffers from AFib, and you know blood thinners are not an ideal solution.

Atrial fibrillation (AFib) is the most common type of cardiac arrhythmia (an irregular heartbeat), affecting more than 5 million Americans today. People with AFib typically have a five times greater risk of suffering from a stroke than someone who has a regular heartbeat.1 As I move further into my 50’s, more and more of my friends are experiencing this issue, and living their lives differently because there was no alternative to blood thinners. Until now!

The Boston Scientific WATCHMAN Left Atrial Appendage Closure Device is a permanent device alternative to warfarin, a common blood thinner, for those with non-valvular AFib who need one. It not reduces the risk of stroke and helps most people discontinue and stop worrying about the risks and challenges associated with blood thinners.

Patients Are Not Taking Their Blood Thinners As They Should

92% of patients with AFib would consider a one-time procedure that would allow them to discontinue blood thinners and the risks and lifestyle challenges associated with them, according to a recent Harris survey by Boston Scientific of patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation.

  • The vast majority of patients surveyed (82%) have never heard of the WATCHMAN Left Atrial Appendage Closure Device.
  • Of those who would consider the procedure:
    • 74% want to reduce their risk of complications (like bleeding) caused by blood thinners
    • 56% would prefer to not take blood thinners everyday/have to remember to take blood thinners every day
    • 37% believe the device may give them greater flexibility to do the things they want to do in their daily life

In addition, the WATCHMAN device allows patients the freedom from food and drink restrictions that come from using blood thinners. WATCHMAN can eliminate the need for regular blood tests and most patients are able to stop their blood thinners within 45 days from the date of implantation. The patients regain their freedom!

100,000 Devices Worldwide

WATCHMAN could be the long-term solution you are looking for. As an alternative to blood thinners, this one-time procedure significantly reduces the risk of stroke as well as any bleeding concerns that blood thinners can bring. WATCHMAN is the only FDA-approved device alternative to warfarin proven to reduce stroke risk in people with non-valvular AFib who need another option

Is The WATCHMAN Device Right for You?

If you have atrial fibrillation not caused by a heart valve problem then the next step is finding out if the WATCHMAN device is right for you. You can fill out a questionnaire here to see if you might be a candidate.

The next step is talking to your cardiologist about your options. Be sure to let your cardiologist know of any bleeding concerns from falls or accidents. They have the knowledge to know if WATCHMAN device is right for you, and can discuss the benefits and risks of this option, including internal bleeding, stroke and others.

1 January CT, Wann LS, Alpert JS, et al. 2014 AHA/ACC/HRS guideline for the management of patients with atrial fibrillation: a report of the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association Task Force on practice guidelines and the Heart Rhythm Society. Circulation. 2014 Dec 2;130(23):e199-267. doi: 10.1161/CIR.0000000000000041. Epub 2014 Mar 28. No abstract available. Erratum in: Circulation. 2014 Dec 2;130(23):e272-4.

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Tricia worked in the financial services industry for over 20 years before deciding to divorce the corporate world in 2018. Tricia retired early so she could travel with her husband Jack (the Boomer) and Bo, their German Shepherd. They enjoy finding new experiences together and spending time with their family.

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