Historical milestones and progress in the research on alcohol septal ablation for hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy

The Canadian Journal of Cardiology
Josef Veselka


The first alcohol septal ablation was performed almost 20 years ago in 1994; since then it has become a widely used technique for the treatment of highly symptomatic patients with hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy (HOCM). It has been shown that postprocedural basal septal shrinking as a result of myocardial scarring is followed by a decrease in left ventricular (LV) obstruction, regression of LV hypertrophy within the first postprocedural year, improvement of diastolic function, and reduction of the degree of mitral regurgitation. All these changes are accompanied by significant symptom relief. Although there is only limited evidence of postprocedural long-term survival, all the studies presented here are consistent in the low incidence of sudden death and similar prognoses with an age- and sex-matched general population. Conversely, we still have to be aware that a certain knowledge gap exists with regard to postprocedural long-term outcome. Therefore, careful selection of patients for alcohol septal ablation is needed, and all patients should be treated in centres offering all therapeutic options.


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Related Concepts

Idiopathic Hypertrophic Subaortic Stenosis
Heart Septum
Historical Events,21st Century
Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy
Sudden Death
Mitral Valve Insufficiency

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