Dr Iqbal Malik - 50th PFO case at OneWelbeck

A PFO closure is a structural heart disease treatment to close a small hole called a patent foramen ovale (PFO) between the upper two heart chambers (atria). Consultant Cardiologist Iqbal Malik tells us about his 50th PFO case performed at OneWelbeck Heart Health.

Dr Iqbal Malik

"It is a pleasure to work here at OneWelbeck. I have got to the half-century with day case PFO closure procedures, and thought I should highlight this achievement.

I run the structural heart program and Imperial College Healthcare so am used to doing these procedures, having done hundreds of them in the past."


These patients are young (under 60!), and have solid indications for having their Patent Foramen Ovale (PFO) closed. I discussed them all at a multidisciplinary meeting to get consensus on this, and ensure safe practice. They may have had a stroke, had paradoxical embolism to another area apart from the brain, or have decompression illness.

The Patient Journey and feedback

We completed a thorough workup in advance of the day. We admitted them to one of the theatre “pods”, where they got changed, and very soon walked into the theatre. The procedure was done under general anaesthesia, and with echo (ultrasound) and X-Ray guidance. I am very experienced in these types of procedures and thus within about 40 minutes, the patient was back in the “pod” and awake.

Within a few hours, they were on their way home, with no sutures to be seen, and with only the internal PFO closure device, and a small band aid in the groin to show for it. The patients loved it at OneWelbeck. We have excellent patient feedback. More importantly, it is patient centred, none of the patients want to be in the clinic any longer than possible.

I am delighted to report that a safe and effective procedure has been achieved in all my patients. Although we offer a day-case facility, I have not had to admit any patients overnight, and all the patients have been contacted by my team on the evening of the procedure to ensure all is well! And it always was!


I look forward to updating you when I get to the 100 mark at OneWelbeck. If you need a PFO closure, please explore the option of choosing OneWelbeck as your clinic of choice.

See Amy have her PFO closed at OneWelbeck: