The WATCHMAN placement is a one-time procedure, implanted similarly to a stent. The WATCHMAN device fits inside the left atrial appendage, effectively closing it off and preventing blood clots from escaping into the bloodstream. The device is small and light, and it cannot be seen or felt outside your body.
During a WATCHMAN device procedure, your cardiac surgeon will make a small incision in your thigh, inserts a small catheter into your artery and then guides the device to the heart. The procedure usually takes about an hour.
After the procedure, you’ll stay overnight in the hospital and be placed on blood thinners for 45 days. After those 45 days, most patients are able to stop taking blood thinners for good, reducing their risk of bleeding and stroke.