Atrial FibrillationAblation Center

The rhythm of life

There are many important reasons why your heart has a beat. So when your heartbeat becomes irregular or racing you can count on the experts at Aurora St. Luke’s to help restore your heart’s rhythm. Our atrial fibrillation ablation center is the only center in Wisconsin – one of only a few nationwide – that offers unique hybrid procedures that helps patients living with complex atrial fibrillation (AFib) get back to their natural rhythm of life.
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The Atrial Fibrillation Ablation Center at Aurora is a health care delivery system of doctors, nurses, electrophysiologists and heart surgeons. We’re specially trained and dedicated to the care of patients with atrial fibrillation (AF). We’re part of the electrophysiology (EP) division of Aurora Cardiovascular Services, which was established in 1977 by Dr. Masood Akhtar as one of the first of its kind in the country.

Services & Treatment

Treating AF can be complex, and there are many procedures available. We’ll find the right one for you. Our Atrial Fibrillation Ablation Center uses the most advanced technologies in electrophysiology. You might be a candidate for an ablation procedure if you have atrial fibrillation symptoms and medicines haven’t worked for you, or if you’ve had unwelcome side effects from arrhythmia medicines.

We offer:

  • Catheter ablation and medical management of supraventricular tachycardias, such as atrioventricular nodal reentry, atrial flutter, Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome or other accessory pathways, and of course, atrial fibrillation.
  • Catheter ablation and medical management of ventricular tachycardias
  • Placement of permanent pacemakers and implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICD), plus long-term follow-up for pacemakers and ICDs using remote, computerized, automatic monitoring
  • Implantation, follow-up and management of new heart failure (biventricular) pacemakers and defibrillators
  • Pulmonary isolation catheter ablation procedures are performed in all AF ablations. Both cryo (freezing) and radiofrequency (RF, heat) energy technologies are available to destroy abnormal electrical activity.
  • Hybrid or convergent ablation procedures: Only a few centers in the U.S. are capable of performing these non-open-chest procedures, which combine electrophysiology (using a catheter inside the heart) with heart surgery. You might be a candidate for a hybrid procedure if you have long-standing atrial fibrillation and/or your heart’s chambers are too large for standard ablation, or if you had an unsuccessful catheter ablation procedure.
  • Left atrial appendage closure devices prevent clots formed in the pouch (appendage) of the left atrium (upper left heart chamber) or filter clots to prevent stroke. Filter (Watchman™) and lasso (Lariat™) types are both available. Left atrial appendage closure devices are used in treatments for the reduction of strokes. You might be a candidate for this device if you can’t take blood thinner meds (anticoagulants) because of allergies or other reactions, or if you’ve taken those meds and you had bleeding problems.

Why Aurora?

At the Atrial Fibrillation Ablation Center, we use a combination of several new technologies so we can cater a plan to your specific needs. Here are some types of technology we use:

  • Three-dimensional imaging
  • X-ray: X-ray procedures are modified to reduce your exposure to radiation. 
  • BiPlane X-ray: This X-ray system can create two simultaneous images of the heart. 
  • Electrocardiogram (EKG)
  • Electrogram (EGM) and anatomically guided ablation
  • Tranesophageal echocardiography (TEE): This shows the left atria very clearly using ultrasound waves. 
  • Intracardiac echocardiography (sometimes called ICE): This is a thin tube (catheter) with tiny ultrasound probes that can be slipped into a vein and moved to the heart to show the structures from the inside. 
  • Cooled tip catheters
  • Cryo and radiofrequency energies
  • Robotics
  • Optical visualization: We use instruments to see the actual heart surface, similar to the technology used in a colonoscopy. 

Meet Our Team

In addition to being board-certified electrophysiologists (board-certified cardiologists with additional years of study in arrhythmias), our team of physicians must demonstrate considerable proficiency with ablations – and specifically adequate proficiency for atrial fibrillation ablation – to ensure our center’s high skill level.

Dr. Sra is a board-certified electrophysiologist. He performed his first atrial fibrillation ablation in 1999. In 1995, he was the first doctor in the U.S. to implant the atrial defibrillator for atrial fibrillation. In 1999 he was appointed professor of medicine, Cardiovascular Disease Section, University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health. Dr. Sra is the Atrial Fibrillation Center medical director. He has been honored as a Fellow by the American College of Cardiology and the Heart Rhythm Society, and has been listed in The Best Doctors in America for a number of years. 

Dr. Cooley is a board-certified electrophysiologist who has been here since 1999. He is board certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine in internal medicine, cardiovascular disease and cardiac electrophysiology. In 1999, he was appointed clinical assistant professor of medicine, Cardiovascular Disease Section, University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health.

Dr. Akhtar is considered one of the world's preeminent electrophysiologists. In 1977, he came to what is now Aurora Sinai to develop the electrophysiology program. The program today has more full-time electrophysiologists than any other program in the U.S., with a national reputation for innovation, quality and service. Dr. Akhtar also developed the electrophysiology laboratory at Aurora St. Luke's Medical Center. He has been honored as a Pioneer in Cardiac Electrophysiology by the Heart Rhythm Society. He is board-certified and also a clinical professor of medicine.

Clinical assistant professor of medicine, board-certified electrophysiologist

Clinical assistant professor of medicine, board-certified electrophysiologist

Clinical associate professor of medicine, clinical professor of pediatrics and board-certified electrophysiologist

A board-certified electrophysiologist, Dr. Hani received advanced fellowship training in complex interventional EP procedures including atrial fibrillation and ventricular tachycardia ablation. He has been honored as a Fellow by the Heart Rhythm Society.

Warren M. Jackman, MD, FHRS
A visiting clinical professor of medicine, Dr. Jackman has been honored as a Pioneer in Cardiac Electrophysiology by the Heart Rhythm Society, the youngest person to receive this honor, for his work in the development of catheter ablation techniques. He has been cited in Best Doctors in America continuously since 1992.

A board-certified cardiovascular surgeon, Dr. Kress was one of the first to adopt the use of hybrid technologies. He teaches others in the U.S. how the procedure is performed.

Clinical assistant professor of medicine and board-certified electrophysiologist

Clinical assistant professor of medicine, board-certified electrophysiologist

A board-certified electrophysiologist, Dr. Niazi is a Fellow of the American College of Cardiology, American College of Physicians, American Heart Association and the Heart Rhythm Society. In 2012 he earned the National Board of Cardiology’s Award of Excellence and has been appointed consultant to the National Academy of Medicine.

Mohamed S. Rahman, MD
Board-certified electrophysiologist

The beat goes on

Atrial Fibrillation Expertise 
Dr. Jasbir Sra explains why awareness of atrial fibrillation is important, and how Aurora can help diagnose, manage and treat this disorder. Cardiologists and electrophysiologists from all over the world come to Aurora St. Luke’s for atrial fibrillation care training from our expert doctors and staff.

Contact Us

Atrial Fibrillation Ablation Center
Aurora Cardiovascular Services, Aurora Medical Group
2801 W Kinnickinnic River Parkway
Milwaukee, WI 53215-3669

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