Complete isolation of left atrium surrounding the pulmonary veins: new insights from the double-Lasso technique in paroxysmal atrial fibrillation

Feifan Ouyang, Dietmar Bänsch, Sabine Ernst, Anselm Schaumann, Hitoshi Hachiya, Minglong Chen, Julian Chun, Peter Falk, Afsaneh Khanedani, Matthias Antz, Karl-Heinz Kuck
Circulation 2004 October 12, 110 (15): 2090-6

BACKGROUND: Paroxysmal atrial fibrillation (PAF) can be eliminated with continuous circular lesions (CCLs) around the pulmonary veins (PVs), but it is unclear whether all PVs are completely isolated.

METHODS AND RESULTS: Forty-one patients with symptomatic PAF underwent 3D mapping, and all PV ostia were marked on the 3D map based on venography. Irrigated radiofrequency energy was applied at a distance from the PV ostia guided by 2 Lasso catheters placed within the ipsilateral superior and inferior PVs. The mean radiofrequency duration was 1550+/-511 seconds for left-sided PVs and 1512+/-506 seconds for right-sided PVs. After isolation, automatic activity was observed in the right-sided PVs in 87.8% and in the left-sided PVs in 80.5%. During the procedure, a spontaneous or induced PV tachycardia (PVT) with a cycle length of 189+/-29 ms was observed in 19 patients. During a mean follow-up of 6 months, atrial tachyarrhythmias recurred in 10 patients. Nine patients underwent a repeat procedure. Conduction gaps in the left CCL in 9 patients and in the right CCL in 2 patients were closed during the second procedure. A spontaneous PVT with a cycle length of 212+/-44 ms was demonstrated in 7 of 9 patients, even though no PVT had been observed in 6 of these 7 patients during the first procedure. No AF recurred in 39 patients after PV isolation during follow-up.

CONCLUSIONS: Automatic activity and fast tachycardia within the PVs could reflect an arrhythmogenic substrate in patients with PAF, which could be eliminated by isolating all PVs with CCLs guided by 3D mapping and the double-Lasso technique in the majority of patients.

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