PMID: 12417845Nov 6, 2002Paper

Atrial pacing for the prevention and termination of atrial fibrillation

The American Journal of Geriatric Cardiology
Irina Savelieva, A John Camm


Atrial fibrillation (AF) affects about 2% of the general population and 8%-11% of those older than 65 years. The demand for effective therapeutic strategies for AF is anticipated to increase substantially as the proportion of the elderly population increases. Atrioventricular nodal ablation accompanied by permanent pacemaker implantation is an established option in elderly patients with intractable arrhythmia and poor ventricular rate control. However, it renders most patients pacemaker dependent and does not eliminate symptoms associated with loss of atrial transport or reduce the risk of stroke. The considerable limitations of rhythm or rate control strategies prompted interest in preventative atrial pacing, which may reduce the incidence of AF by either eliminating the triggers and/or by modifying the substrate of AF. Atrial or dual-chamber pacing has been proven to prevent or delay progression to permanent AF in elderly patients with sinus node dysfunction as compared with ventricular pacing. Patients with advanced atrial conduction delay may benefit from atrial resynchronization pacing. There may be additional benefits associated with the use of particular sites of pacing, specific pacing algorithms designed to target pote...Continue Reading


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