Oct 18, 2006

Analysis of surface electrocardiograms in atrial fibrillation: techniques, research, and clinical applications

Europace : European Pacing, Arrhythmias, and Cardiac Electrophysiology : Journal of the Working Groups on Cardiac Pacing, Arrhythmias, and Cardiac Cellular Electrophysiology of the European Society of Cardiology
Andreas BollmannLeif Sörnmo

Abstract

Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common arrhythmia encountered in clinical practice. Neither the natural history of AF nor its response to therapy is sufficiently predictable by clinical and echocardiographic parameters. The purpose of this article is to describe technical aspects of novel electrocardiogram (ECG) analysis techniques and to present research and clinical applications of these methods for characterization of both the fibrillatory process and the ventricular response during AF. Atrial fibrillatory frequency (or rate) can reliably be assessed from the surface ECG using digital signal processing (extraction of atrial signals and spectral analysis). This measurement shows large inter-individual variability and correlates well with intra-atrial cycle length, a parameter which appears to have primary importance in AF maintenance and response to therapy. AF with a low fibrillatory rate is more likely to terminate spontaneously and responds better to antiarrhythmic drugs or cardioversion, whereas high-rate AF is more often persistent and refractory to therapy. Ventricular responses during AF can be characterized by a variety of methods, which include analysis of heart rate variability, RR-interval histograms, Lorenz p...Continue Reading

  • References98
  • Citations68
  • References98
  • Citations68

Citations

Mentioned in this Paper

Autonomic Nervous System Disorders
Prescribing Patterns, Physician
Entire Autonomic Nervous System
Medical Research Activity
Computer Assisted Diagnosis
Ventricular Dysfunction, Left
Anti-Arrhythmia Agents
Nonlinear Dynamics
Atrial Fibrillation
Hearing Loss, High-Frequency

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