Sparrow first to enroll heart patient in clinical trial

Published: February 18, 2021

LANSING, MI – Sparrow has become the first hospital in Michigan to implant a WATCHMAN FLX heart device in patients as part of a clinical trial aimed at reducing risk of stroke in a broad range of people with atrial fibrillation

Cardiac Watchman FLX procedure team
“If the study meets its endpoints, it could potentially be a game-changer for a large number of patients with atrial fibrillation. We are very excited that we have this trial for our patients in Mid- Michigan.”

The procedure was performed by Mohammed Qintar, M.D., Director of the Sparrow Structural Heart Program, and Sparrow’s Structural Heart Team, and is part of what’s called the CHAMPION-AF clinical trial.

Atrial Fibrillation is an irregular heart rhythm that increases the risk of blood clots, stroke, heart failure and other heart-related complications. It is the most common form of heart arrhythmia in the United States, affecting more than 2.7 million Americans.  The WATCHMAN device is implanted in the upper chamber of the heart and used for patients with atrial fibrillation who cannot use blood thinners, which are commonly prescribed for those with the condition.

“We are pleased to participate in this important study and to be the first site in the state of Michigan to enroll a patient in it. This study will evaluate whether a one-time WATCHMAN FLX procedure is equally effective as blood thinning medication as a first-line treatment for a wider population of patients with atrial fibrillation,” said Sparrow Interventional Cardiologist Nam Cho, D.O.

“A positive outcome from the CHAMPION-AF trial may put this device on equal footing with best-in-class drug therapy for stroke risk reduction and offer an alternative for more patients who would otherwise face lifelong use of blood thinners and the associated risk of serious bleeding.”

Sparrow was the first hospital in Lansing to offer the WATCHMAN device and recently performed its 400th successful WATCHMAN implant.

Sparrow provides world-class clinical research close to home with highly skilled physicians and leading-edge medicine available only at the nation’s leading medical programs.

For more information on this trial or other ongoing clinical trials, please contact Sparrow Clinical Research Institute at 517.364.5760.


Sparrow is Mid-Michigan’s premier healthcare organization and includes hospitals in Lansing, Carson City, Charlotte, Ionia and St. Johns, as well as Physicians Health Plan, Sparrow Care Network, Sparrow Medical Group, the Michigan Athletic Club, and AL!VE. Sparrow is affiliated with Michigan Medicine through the Sparrow Children’s Center and with Michigan State University’s three human health colleges. Through these partnerships and the dedication of our 10,000 Caregivers, Sparrow pursues a vision to be nationally recognized as a leader in quality and Patient experience. For more information, visit