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Activation and entrainment mapping of hemodynamically unstable ventricular tachycardia using a percutaneous left ventricular assist device.

OBJECTIVES: Our goal was to investigate the effects of percutaneous left ventricular assist device (pLVAD) support during catheter ablation of unstable ventricular tachycardia (VT).

BACKGROUND: Mechanical cardiac support during ablation of unstable VT is being increasingly used, but there is little available information on the potential hemodynamic benefits.

METHODS: Twenty-three consecutive procedures in 22 patients (ischemic, n = 11) with structural heart disease and hemodynamically unstable VT were performed with either pLVAD support (n = 10) or no pLVAD support (intra-aortic balloon pump counterpulsation, n = 6; no support, n = 7). Procedural monitoring included vital signs, left atrial pressure, arterial blood pressure, cerebral perfusion/oximetry, VT characteristics, and ablation outcomes.

RESULTS: The pLVAD group was maintained in VT significantly longer than the non-pLVAD group (66.7 min vs. 27.5 min; p = 0.03) and required fewer early terminations of sustained VT for hemodynamic instability (1.0 vs. 4.0; p = 0.001). More patients in the pLVAD group had at least 1 VT termination during ablation than non-pLVAD patients (9 of 10 [90%] vs. 5 of 13 [38%]; p = 0.03). There were no differences between groups in duration of cerebral deoxygenation, hypotension or perioperative changes in left atrial pressure, brain natriuretic peptide levels, lactic acid, or renal function.

CONCLUSIONS: In patients with scar-related VT undergoing catheter ablation, pLVAD support was able to safely maintain end-organ perfusion despite extended periods of hemodynamically unstable VT. Randomized studies are necessary to determine whether this enhanced ability to perform entrainment and activation mapping will translate into a higher rate of clinical success.

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