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Health Risks of Atrial Fibrillation Raised During Awareness Month



  Health Risks of Atrial Fibrillation Raised During Awareness Month

  AtriCure Seeks to Improve Lives by Encouraging Education and Treatment for
                               People with Afib

Business Wire

WEST CHESTER, Ohio -- September 19, 2013

September is Atrial Fibrillation (Afib) Awareness Month and AtriCure, Inc.
(Nasdaq: ATRC) encourages those who are affected to participate in “ACT
Against Afib,” a new campaign focused on raising awareness of the risks of
Afib and the various treatment options available. AtriCure is a leading
developer of medical devices used in the treatment of Afib and offers the only
FDA-approved device for the surgical treatment of Afib.

“ACT” is an acronym used to communicate the three simple steps involved in
understanding the risks and treatment options available for Afib patients. The
three steps include: Assess your risk, Consult with your doctor, and Treat
your Afib. A dedicated website, patientsact.atricure.com, contains more
information on the campaign along with links to risk assessment tools,
physician locators and a review of treatment options from leading medical
societies and patient organizations.

Afib is the most common irregular heartbeat. Symptoms of Afib can include
heart palpitations, dizziness, extreme fatigue and shortness of breath,
although some people may not feel any symptoms. Afib results in quivering of
the upper chambers of the heart (or atria) that, unless properly treated, can
lead to serious health issues including stroke, heart failure and impaired
quality of life. During episodes of Afib, blood may pool within the atria and
form clots that can travel to the brain and cause a stroke. Those with atrial
fibrillation have a 500 percent greater risk of stroke than the general
population, and Afib-related strokes are twice as deadly as other strokes.

“As the creator of Atrial Fibrillation Awareness Month and a patient who has
been Afib-free for eight years due to a surgical procedure, I am very pleased
to see the ACT Against Afib campaign help raise awareness of this condition,”
says Mellanie True Hills, founder of StopAfib.org, a leading resource for Afib
patients. “This program will encourage collaboration between patients and
their physicians to address the risks and treatment options for this
devastating condition that takes so many lives.”

Afib is often associated with common heart conditions like valve and coronary
disease. Roughly 40 percent of patients undergoing mitral valve procedures and
15 percent of coronary by-pass procedures have Afib. A short add-on Afib
correction procedure, called the Maze IV, has been shown in multiple clinical
studies to achieve high cure rates with low complications. Unfortunately, due
to a lack of awareness and education among physicians and patients, only one
in four patients with Afib undergoing a valve or by-pass procedure receives a
surgical Afib procedure.

"Lack of Afib awareness and education leaves tens of thousands of patients
already in the operating room for heart procedures not receiving a low risk,
high cure procedure,” according to Marc Gerdisch, MD, chief of Cardiovascular
and Thoracic Surgery at St. Francis Heart Hospital in Indianapolis and member
of AtriCure’s Surgeon Education Steering Committee. “I fully support the ACT
campaign and the effort around broader awareness and discussion of treatment
options between patients and their physicians," said Dr. Gerdisch.

AtriCure’s commitment to advancing the treatment of Afib includes substantial
investments in education and clinical science. Over the past 18 months, the
company has focused intently on training physicians in the surgical treatment
of Afib. To date they have trained more than 1000 surgeons via classroom,
hands-on training and case support using world-renowned Afib experts as
faculty.

The company is also conducting the largest and most detailed multicenter
clinical trial on the surgical treatment of Afib. This trial will establish
the long-term durability of their landmark FDA-approved Synergy Ablation
System and Maze IV procedure by monitoring patient heart rhythms for at least
three years after the procedure. This month, the trial passed the halfway
point in patient enrollment.

More information about Afib is available at StopAfib.org.

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.

Contact:

Rasor Marketing Communications
Becky Fickenworth, 513-793-1234
becky@rasormarketing.com
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