Objectives: This study sought to evaluate the safety and feasibility of percutaneous retrieval of left atrial appendage closure (LAAC) devices with an endoscopic grasping tool. Background: Transcatheter LAAC is a mechanical stroke prevention strategy in patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation (AF) who are poor candidates for long-term oral anticoagulation. However, these LAAC devices can be inadvertently released into an unfavorable location, the device might migrate to a different (unfavorable) position within the left atrial appendage (LAA) or may embolize from the heart into the aorta. In such instances, it can be challenging to remove the LAAC device without open cardiac or vascular surgery. Methods: This study reports on a series of 4 cases in which an endoscopic grasping tool (Raptor) designed for gastrointestinal applications was used to percutaneously (non-surgically) remove LAAC devices that were either malpositioned or embolized. Results: LAAC devices were safely and non-surgically removed using the grasping device in all 4 cases (Amulet: 1, Watchman: 3). Devices were successfully retrieved from the left inferior pulmonary vein, descending aorta, aortic arch, and the edge of the LAA ostium. Time of device retrieval post-LAAC implantation ranged from 24 h to 1 year. Special precautionary measures, such as preemptive pericardial access, embolic protection devices, and intraprocedural imaging, were used in 2 cases. Conclusions: This case series demonstrated that the endoscopic grasping tool appeared to be safe and useful to percutaneously retrieve LAAC devices.
- device embolization