Boston Scientific has implanted its Watchman Left Atrial Appendage (LAA) Closure Device in the first patient in Latin America.

The device is used to prevent embolization of thrombi in the LAA, thus preventing the occurrence of ischemic stroke and systemic thromboembolism in patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation.

Angiografia de Occidente interventional cardiologist Bernardo Caicedo said the percutaneously delivered device promises to offer a safe and effective alternative for atrial fibrillation patients who cannot take long-term oral anticoagulants and have limited options to reduce their stroke risk.

"It incorporates a pre-loaded device that is both repositionable and retrievable to enhance its ease of use," Caicedo said.

The company said in the multi-center, randomized Protect AF clinical trial, the device proved to be non-inferior to long-term warfarin therapy.

Boston is currently enrolling US patients in the Prevail study in order to receive US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval.