Michael Carrel, CEO of AtriCure, is on a mission to eradicate atrial fibrillation, or AFib.
AFib increases a patient’s risk of stroke by five or six times, leading to a “miserable existence” Carrel says. Thirty-three million people around the globe have AFib but are not properly treated.
Awareness of the condition and its treatment options are big parts of Carrel’s mission. For one thing, as the disease progresses, it becomes more difficult to treat.
AtriCure has trained more than 2,500 physicians over the past three years, run world-class advanced courses, and worked with medical societies. Becoming an “education powerhouse” and creating awareness among the referring physician base has led to about 20% growth over the past five years.
Carrel utilizes a three-legged foundation. First is great products he says, because to compete against bigger companies “we have to be demonstrably better than anybody else out there.” Second is great clinical data that prove the technology works. The final leg is the aforementioned education aspect.
Because the AFib market is so big and under-penetrated, Carrel sees a lot of innovation coming in the space.