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October 1, 2013 at 8:00 AM EDT

In the Fight Against Atrial Fibrillation, AtriCure Launches Maze IV Training Program in Europe

AMSTERDAM, Netherlands--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Oct. 1, 2013-- AtriCure, Inc. (Nasdaq: ATRC), is partnering with leading atrial fibrillation (Afib) centers and thought leaders across Europe to provide best-in-class training on surgical ablation. The launch of an international Maze IV Training program will take place on October 1 in Germany at Sana Stuttgart Cardiac Surgery Center, one of six initial European hospitals selected to participate in this important initiative. This initial course will be led by surgeons recognized as experts in the field of surgical treatment for Afib. They include:

  • James L. Cox, MD, professor of cardiac surgery at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Missouri, USA. Dr. Cox is recognized as the innovator of the Maze procedure and is primarily responsible for its origins in cardiac surgery.
  • Kai-Nicolas Doll, MD, chief of cardiac surgery at Sana Cardiac Surgery Center in Stuttgart, Germany.
  • Timo Weimar, MD, cardiac surgeon at Sana Cardiac Surgery Center in Stuttgart, Germany and international medical director of AtriCure.

Performed by a cardiothoracic surgeon, the Maze IV procedure uses an energy source to create a “maze” of scar tissue on the heart that helps direct electrical impulses to restore the heart’s normal rhythm. The procedure is performed using AtriCure’s Synergy Ablation System which is CE Mark-approved for use in Europe. AtriCure’s System is the only device shown to consistently cure Afib in the most rigorous and demanding clinical trials.

"This is an extremely important initiative to ensure that patients who are eligible for the Maze IV procedure receive it if they are undergoing another heart procedure,” said Dr. Weimar. “It is a proven low risk, high cure procedure. If more surgeons were trained on the proper technique, we could make a significant impact in the incidence of Afib among our patients.”

As part of this initiative, AtriCure has formed a MAZE IV European Educational Steering Committee to include luminaries in the area of surgical Afib ablation from the following centers: OLVG Amsterdam, UZ Leuven Belgium; Hospital Clinic of Barcelona, Spain; San Rafaelle University Hospital, Milan, Italy; and The Royal College of Surgeons, London, England.

“By increasing awareness and treatment, this program will launch a greater effort and serve as a model for other programs we have underway in a number of centers internationally,” said Dr. Doll. “Along with AtriCure, we aim to curb the potentially devastating physical and emotional impact Afib can have on families, and the financial burden on society.”

Afib is the most common diagnosed arrhythmia, impacting 9.6 million Europeans. People over the age of 40 have a one in four chance of developing Afib in their lifetime, while those with Afib have a 500 percent greater risk of stroke, heart failure and reduced quality of life than the general population.

“We are committed to reducing the global Afib epidemic and healing the lives of those affected,” said Michael Carrel, president and CEO of AtriCure. “This initiative is part of our core investment in education and clinical science to bring better treatment options to patients in more parts of the world.”

About AtriCure, Inc.

AtriCure, Inc. is a leading atrial fibrillation solutions partner, providing innovative products, professional education and support for clinical science to reduce the economic and social burden of atrial fibrillation. AtriCure's Synergy Ablation System is the first and only device approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the surgical treatment of Persistent and Longstanding Persistent forms of Afib in patients undergoing certain open heart procedures concomitantly (simultaneously). AtriCure's AtriClip™ Left Atrial Appendage (LAA) occlusion device is the most widely implanted device for LAA management worldwide. Afib affects more than two million people worldwide and is estimated to cost more than $6.5 billion annually in healthcare expenses. The number affected by Afib is expected to grow to 12 million by 2050.

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements include statements that address activities, events or developments that AtriCure expects, believes or anticipates will or may occur in the future, such as earnings estimates, other predictions of financial performance, launches by AtriCure of new products and market acceptance of AtriCure’s products. Forward-looking statements are based on AtriCure’s experience and perception of current conditions, trends, expected future developments and other factors it believes are appropriate under the circumstances and are subject to numerous risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond AtriCure’s control. These risks and uncertainties include the rate and degree of market acceptance of AtriCure’s products, AtriCure’s ability to develop and market new and enhanced products, the timing of and ability to obtain and maintain regulatory clearances and approvals for its products, the timing of and ability to obtain reimbursement of procedures utilizing AtriCure’s products, competition from existing and new products and procedures or AtriCure’s ability to effectively react to other risks and uncertainties described from time to time in AtriCure’s SEC filings, such as fluctuation of quarterly financial results, reliance on third party manufacturers and suppliers, litigation or other proceedings, government regulation and stock price volatility. AtriCure does not guarantee any forward-looking statement, and actual results may differ materially from those projected. AtriCure undertakes no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

Source: AtriCure, Inc.

AtriCure, Inc.
Andy Wade, 513-755-4564
Vice President and Chief Financial Officer
AtriCure Media Contact:
Rasor Marketing Communications
Becky Fickenworth, 1-513-793-1234