LANSING, MI – Sparrow has become the first hospital in Michigan, and second in the country, to install a new device that can reduce the risk of stroke in Patients with atrial fibrillation (AFIB). The investigational device, called the Amulet, works by fully closing or blocking the left atrial appendage of the heart, reducing the risk of a blood clot that can cause a stroke. In Patients with AFIB, the left atrial appendage does not contract effectively and can become a source for blood clots. Patients with AFIB are often prescribed blood-thinning medication but that approach comes with a lifetime of medication management and the risk of major bleeding. Sparrow Interventional Cardiologist Gaurav Dhar, M.D., recently inserted the device for the first time at Sparrow and in the entire state. “Sparrow through its research wing, Sparrow Clinical Research Institute, is able to offer the mid-Michigan region investigational devices, drugs and procedures, with Amulet being the latest example,” Dr. Dhar said. AFIB is the most common form of heart arrhythmia in the United States, affecting more than 5 million Americans. It causes an estimated 20 percent of all strokes. According to the World Health Organization, an estimated 15 million strokes occur worldwide each year. About 90 percent of all strokes are ischemic, which occurs when blood clots block the blood vessels to the brain. Stroke is the third-leading cause of death in the United States. Sparrow is also the only health system in mid-Michigan offering the Watchman, an FDA-approved device designed for those with AFIB who are unable to take blood thinners due to an increased risk of bleeding complications. Sparrow’s Heart and Vascular Center delivers the most comprehensive heart care in mid-Michigan. It has the newest technology in the region. Our board-certified Physicians are leaders in their fields, providing the highest-quality care close to home. Choose Wisely. Choose Sparrow.