Courage comes in many forms and is always found in those who step forward and say “I will.” Dr. Kohei Yamashiro of Takatsuki General Hospital decided to become an EP in 1992, when catheter ablation was in its infancy in Japan. “There was no Aamiodarone or PCPS available in Japan then, so patients frequently died of VT. I thought I needed to do something to treat such patients,” he says.
Fast forward 10 years and having opportunity to witness the capabilities of an early generation Niobe system with VT, Dr. Yamashiro again wanted to be the one. “I made it a personal goal to be the first physician to bring the next generation of cardiac ablation therapy to the people of Japan,” he says. That day came in July 2015, when Takatsuki General became the first hospital to implement Niobe technology in the country.
Dr. Yamashiro has since performed more than 600 magnetic ablation procedures, gaining insight and training from Dr. Peter Weiss of Intermountain Healthcare in the early days. “Once physicians get accustomed to the Niobe, it enables extremely safe procedures for all ablations, with huge advantages especially for VT,” says Dr. Yamashiro. “It also allows me to execute procedures without getting so tired, which could extend my career as an ablation physician.”