We Can Help with Atrial Fibrillation

Atrial fibrillation is a complex disease affecting five million men and women in the U.S., most of them over 60 years old. In fact, you have a one-in-four risk of developing atrial fibrillation in your lifetime. The earlier we diagnose and treat the disease, the more successful we are in helping patients experience longer, more enjoyable lives.


Have you or a family member been diagnosed with atrial fibrillation?

Northwestern Medicine Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute uses a team approach that unites the skills of nationally recognized cardiac electrophysiologists, cardiologists and cardiac surgeons. These specialists collaborate with your primary care physician to tailor atrial fibrillation treatment options to your unique needs. 

Atrial fibrillation treatments at Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute include: 

  • Medical management: Medications are often the first line of defense when treating atrial fibrillation. Drugs are not a cure for atrial fibrillation, but in many cases they help to make the symptoms less bothersome. 
  • Catheter ablation: A nonsurgical treatment option that locates and destroys abnormal electrical pathways in the heart that cause atrial fibrillation. Radiofrequency ablation uses heat to destroy the abnormal electrical pathways that cause atrial fibrillation, while cryoballoon ablation freezes the abnormal pathways. 
  • Left atrial appendage closure: The left atrial appendage is a pocket-like section in the left atrium (upper chamber) of the heart that is often a source of blood clot formation for those with atrial fibrillation and may cause up to 90% of strokes due to atrial fibrillation. Closing the left atrial appendage can prevent blood clots that may cause a stroke. Treatment options that close the left atrial appendage include the Watchman procedure, which is minimally invasive. 
  • Total thoracoscopic modified Maze (TT Maze) procedure: A minimally invasive procedure in which a cardiac surgeon uses special instruments to make small incisions on the sides of the chest to access the heart. The cardiac surgeon then creates scar patterns on the outside of the heart to disrupt (or focus) the irregular flow of electricity causing the atrial fibrillation. If atrial fibrillation persists, a cardiac electrophysiologist will then perform a catheter ablation. The TT Maze procedure is a “one-two punch” combination procedure to eliminate atrial fibrillation.
  • Open heart surgery: The “classic” or “cut and sew” Maze procedure is performed through an open chest incision. Electrical blocks or barriers to prevent atrial fibrillation are created in the left and right atria (upper chambers) of the heart with the goal of eliminating atrial fibrillation. 

Atrial Fibrillation Patient Education Guide
Fill out the form to download your free Atrial Fibrillation Patient Education Guide.

Have a Nurse Contact Me
Fill out the form to have a nurse specializing in atrial fibrillation contact you by phone or email.

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Whether you are experiencing symptoms that you do not understand, have already been diagnosed with atrial fibrillation, or are looking for a second opinion, Northwestern Medicine Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute offers comprehensive expertise to you and your loved ones at five convenient locations. 

Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute at Northwestern Memorial Hospital
 675 N. Saint Clair St.
 Galter Pavilion, Suite 19-100
 Chicago, IL 60611
312.NM.HEART (312.664.3278) 

Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute at
Lake Forest Hospital 

1000 North Westmoreland Road
Main Entrance
Lake Forest, IL 60045
847.53.HEART (847.534.3278)

Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute at
Central DuPage Hospital 

25 N. Winfield Road
Winfield, IL 60190

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Northwestern Memorial Hospital 312.NM.HEART (312.664.3278)Central DuPage Hospital 630.232.0280Lake Forest Hospital 847.53.HEART (847.534.3278)


Delnor Hospital 630.232.0280

Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute at Kishwaukee Hospital
 1 Kish Hospital Drive
 DeKalb, IL 60115

Northwestern Memorial Hospital is ranked No. 10 in the U.S. for cardiology and heart surgery by U.S. News & World Report, 2020-2021. Our ranking is a reflection of the leading-edge services we offer and the results we achieve for our patients.

  • Among the top 10 cardiology and heart surgery programs in the nation, out of almost 600 ranked hospitals, for six consecutive years
  • Highest ranked cardiology and heart surgery program in Illinois for 13 consecutive years
  • Highest available cardiology and heart surgery patient survival score for nine consecutive years
Kishwaukee Hospital 815.758.5844

Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute at
Delnor Hospital 

 300 Randall Road

Geneva, IL 60134

McHenry Hospital 815.759.8070Huntley Hospital 815.759.8070

Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute at Huntley Hospital
10400 Haligus Road
Huntley, IL 60142

Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute at McHenry Hospital
4201 Medical Center Drive
McHenry, IL 60050