JOURNAL ARTICLE
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Mechanism and interpretation of two-for-one response to premature atrial complexes during atrioventricular node re-entry tachycardia.

AIMS: The response to premature atrial complexes (PACs) during tachycardia has been shown to differentiate atrioventricular nodal re-entrant tachycardia (AVNRT) from focal junctional tachycardia (JT). His refractory PAC (HrPACs) perturbing the next His (resetting with fusion) is diagnostic of AVNRT and such a late PAC fusing with the native beat cannot reset the focal source of JT. Early PAC advancing the immediate His with continuation of tachycardia suggests JT but can also occur in AVNRT due to simultaneous conduction through the AV nodal fast and slow pathways [two-for-one response (TFOR)]. The objective of this study was to evaluate the incidence and mechanism of TFOR after early premature atrial complexes (ePACs) during AVNRT and to differentiate it from the known response to ePACs during JT.

METHODS AND RESULTS: Typical AVNRT cases were diagnosed using standard criteria. We evaluated the responses to scanning PACs delivered during tachycardia in 100 patients undergoing AV node slow pathway modification for AVNRT. The responses to HrPACs and ePACs delivered from coronary sinus os or high right atrium were retrospectively reviewed. In 10 patients, ePACs advanced the immediate His with continuation of tachycardia. In all 10 cases, HrPACs advanced the next His, confirming AVNRT as the mechanism, and indicating a TFOR.

CONCLUSION: A TFOR can occur in a small number of patients during AVNRT and is therefore not diagnostic of JT. However, HrPACs always perturbed the next His in these cases, confirming the diagnosis of AVNRT and allowing for differentiation from JT.

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