Milestones & News

Hansen SenseiTM Robotic Catheter System

Stony Brook University Heart Institute now offers the innovative Hansen SenseiTM Robotic Catheter System in its Electrophysiology section to improve the treatment of arrhythmia patients

SBUMC has acquired the Sensei® Robotic Catheter System made by Hansen Medical, Inc., to treat electrical heart arrhythmias. On January 27, Dr. Eric Rashba and colleagues in the electrophysiology laboratory performed the first robotic atrial fibrillation ablation procedure on Long Island using the newly acquired Hansen robotic catheter. According to Dr. David Brown, Chief of Cardiovascular Medicine and Co-Director of the Stony Brook University Heart Institute, atrial fibrillation is the most common arrhythmia, occurring in over two million Americans. It is associated with very bothersome symptoms including palpitations and exercise intolerance. More significantly, patients with atrial fibrillation are at as much as a seven-fold increased risk of stroke compared to the general population. Anti-arrhythmic medications are effective only about 50 to 60 percent of the time and are associated with potentially dangerous side effects. Ablation therapy holds great promise for the cure of atrial fibrillation in appropriate patients. The Hansen robotic catheter gives our electrophysiologists more accurate and stable control of catheter movement during these complex and delicate procedures.

Minimally-invasive treatment of arrhythmias:

  • One method of treating arrhythmias is to destroy the cells that are causing the heart to beat irregularly using a catheter placed in specific locations inside the heart. This is called catheter ablation. Radiofrequency energy is the most common energy source used to eliminate the abnormal heart beats.
  • As a precursor to treating the arrhythmia, the physician creates an electrical road map of the inside of the heart to help guide the placement of the ablation catheter. This road map is created by placing a catheter that records electrical signals from various locations in the heart. This catheter is called a mapping catheter.

A New Tool

The most important element in the mapping and ablation phase is to place the catheters in the correct location of the heart so that an accurate map is created and only the abnormal tissue is destroyed. The new Sensei system from Hansen Medical™ is designed to facilitate minimally invasive catheter-based procedures in the heart by providing our physicians with more control over catheter placement during these procedures. The system incorporates a robotic sheath that allows the physician to remotely and robotically control the movement of an ablation catheter within a patient's heart. By electronically translating the physician's hand movements to the catheter, the Sensei System facilitates accurate positioning, manipulation and control.

The Stony Brook University Heart Institute - Hansen robot
The catheter is controlled robotically by the three-dimensional mouse shown in the center of the picture.

Navigating percutaneous catheters to hard-to-reach cardiac sites can be difficult and time-consuming. Stony Brook University Heart Institute now has a tool that allows our physicians to do robotically what they have always done by hand. We believe our new Sensei system will help our physicians to create more accurate maps and therefore improve the treatment of our patients.

To learn more about our Electrophysiology services, click here.


Introducing the Sensei™ Robotic Catheter System

Stony Brook University Medical Center
Nicolls Road and Health Sciences Drive intersection
Stony Brook, NY 11794

Phone: 631-44-Heart