Recent progress in cardiac catheterization and devices allowed to develop new therapies for severe cardiac diseases like arrhythmias and heart failure. The skills required for such interventions are still very challenging to learn, and typically acquired over several years. Virtual reality simulators can reduce this burden by allowing to practice such procedures without consequences on patients.
Our contribution is to propose the first training system dedicated to cardiac electrophysiology, including pacing and ablation procedures. This framework involves a catheter navigation that faithfully reproduces issues intrinsic to intra-cardiac catheterization and an efficient GPU-based electrophysiological model. We developed a multithreading approach to compute both real-time simulations (navigation and electrophysiology) asynchronously. With this method, the simulation reaches high computational performance that allows to account for user interactions in real-time. Based on a scenario of cardiac arrhythmia, the user-guided simulator is able to navigate inside vessels and cardiac cavities with a catheter and to reproduce an ablation procedure involving tasks: extra-cellular potential measurements, endocardial surface reconstruction, electrophysiology mapping, RF ablation, as well as electrical stimulation. This works is a step towards computerized medical learning curriculum.