Comparison of radiofrequency catheter ablation of drivers and circumferential pulmonary vein isolation in atrial fibrillation: a noninferiority randomized multicenter RADAR-AF trial

Felipe Atienza, Jesús Almendral, José Miguel Ormaetxe, Angel Moya, Jesús Daniel Martínez-Alday, Antonio Hernández-Madrid, Eduardo Castellanos, Fernando Arribas, Miguel Ángel Arias, Luis Tercedor, Rafael Peinado, Maria Fe Arcocha, Mercedes Ortiz, Nieves Martínez-Alzamora, Angel Arenal, Francisco Fernández-Avilés, José Jalife
Journal of the American College of Cardiology 2014 December 16, 64 (23): 2455-67

BACKGROUND: Empiric circumferential pulmonary vein isolation (CPVI) has become the therapy of choice for drug-refractory atrial fibrillation (AF). Although results are suboptimal, it is unknown whether mechanistically-based strategies targeting AF drivers are superior.

OBJECTIVES: This study sought to determine the efficacy and safety of localized high-frequency source ablation (HFSA) compared with CPVI in patients with drug-refractory AF.

METHODS: This prospective, multicenter, single-blinded study of 232 patients (age 53 ± 10 years, 186 males) randomized those with paroxysmal AF (n = 115) to CPVI or HFSA-only (noninferiority design) and those with persistent AF (n = 117) to CPVI or a combined ablation approach (CPVI + HFSA, superiority design). The primary endpoint was freedom from AF at 6 months post-first ablation procedure. Secondary endpoints included freedom from atrial tachyarrhythmias (AT) at 6 and 12 months, periprocedural complications, overall adverse events, and quality of life.

RESULTS: In paroxysmal AF, HFSA failed to achieve noninferiority at 6 months after a single procedure but, after redo procedures, was noninferior to CPVI at 12 months for freedom from AF and AF/AT. Serious adverse events were significantly reduced in the HFSA group versus CPVI patients (p = 0.02). In persistent AF, there were no significant differences between treatment groups for primary and secondary endpoints, but CPVI + HFSA trended toward more serious adverse events.

CONCLUSIONS: In paroxysmal AF, HFSA failed to achieve noninferiority at 6 months but was noninferior to CPVI at 1 year in achieving freedom of AF/AT and a lower incidence of severe adverse events. In persistent AF, CPVI + HFSA offered no incremental value. (Radiofrequency Ablation of Drivers of Atrial Fibrillation [RADAR-AF]; NCT00674401).

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