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Device shows promise in preventing strokes

Women’s hair clips. Barrettes.

Cleveland Clinic CEO Dr. Delos “Toby” Cosgrove pauses for effect as he describes his inspiration for the AtriClip, a new medical device designed to eliminate the source of many strokes in patients with heart rhythm problems.

“One-third of the strokes in this country are caused by these clots,” Cosgrove said on a recent visit to Florida.

When healthy, the heart’s four chambers contract and relax in perfect, coordinated rhythm, and blood flows smoothly. But for about 3 million people in the United States — most of them elderly — the upper chambers quiver in a disorganized way. The condition is called atrial fibrillation.

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