May 29, 2000

Bimodal RR interval distribution in chronic atrial fibrillation: impact of dual atrioventricular nodal physiology on long-term rate control after catheter ablation of the posterior atrionodal input

Journal of Cardiovascular Electrophysiology
J TebbenjohannsD Pfeiffer


Radiofrequency (RF) catheter modification of the AV node in patients with atrial fibrillation (AF) is limited by an unpredictable decrease of the ventricular rate and a high incidence of permanent AV block. A bimodal RR histogram has been suggested to serve as a predictor for successful outcome but the corresponding AV node properties have never been characterized. We hypothesized that a bimodal histogram indicates dual AV nodal physiology and predicts a better outcome after AV node modification in chronic AF. Thirty-seven patients were prospectively subdivided into two groups according to the RR histogram of 24-hour ECG monitoring. Before to RF ablation, internal cardioversion and programmed stimulation were performed. Among the 22 patients (group I) with a bimodal RR histogram, dual AV nodal physiology was found in 17 (77%) patients. Ablation significantly decreased ventricular rate with loss of the peak of short RR cycles after ablation (mean and maximal ventricular rates: 32% and 35% rate reduction, respectively; P < 0.01). In 15 patients with a unimodal RR histogram (group II), dual AV nodal physiology was found in 2 (13%), and rate reductions were 16% and 17%, respectively. At 6 months, 3 (14%) patients in group I and 6 (...Continue Reading

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Mentioned in this Paper

Heart Block
Chronic Disease
Blastocyst Implantation, Natural
Cardiac Catheterization Procedures
Atrial Fibrillation
Atrioventricular Block
Holter Electrocardiography
Structure of Atrioventricular Node
Ventricular Function
NODAL gene

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