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Association of left atrial wall thickness with recurrence after cryoballoon ablation of paroxysmal atrial fibrillation.

BACKGROUND: Transmural injury plays a role in successful atrial fibrillation ablation. The effect of left atrial wall thickness (LAWT) on the efficacy of radiofrequency ablation has been identified, but data on the relationship between LAWT and cryoballoon for paroxysmal atrial fibrillation (PAF) are lacking. We aim to explore the relationship between LAWT and recurrence after cryoballoon ablation (CBA).

METHODS: We studied 364 patients (mean age 62 years) with PAF who underwent a second-generation CBA and pre-procedure cardiac CTA. LAWT and left atrial volume index (LAVI) were obtained based on pre-procedure cardiac CTA measurements. Follow-up was at least 12 months and predictors of atrial tachyarrhythmia recurrence during follow-up were assessed.

RESULTS: Patients were followed up for a median of 19 (12-28) months, with an atrial tachyarrhythmia-free rate of 77.5% after cryoablation. Greater LAVI (50.0 ± 19.6 mL/m2 vs. 44.3 ± 15.4 mL/m2 , P = 0.018) and greater LAWT (1.67 ± 0.24 vs. 1.46 ± 0.25 mm, P < 0.001) were associated with atrial tachyarrhythmia recurrence. The mean LAWT of PV antrum correlated with TTI (R = 0.252, P < 0.001). Adding LAWT to the established risk model improved both the discrimination and reclassification effects (IDI: 0.099, 95% CI: 0.065-0.134, P < 0.001; NRI: 0.685, 95% CI: 0.455-0.915, P < 0.001). In a multivariable Cox proportional hazard model, the mean LAWT of PV antrum (hazard ratio [HR]:3.657, 95%CI: 2.319-5.765, P < 0.001) was an independent predictor of atrial tachyarrhythmia recurrence after cryoablation.

CONCLUSIONS: The mean LAWT of PV antrum, obtained from preoperative measurements on CT, was associated with atrial tachyarrhythmia recurrence after cryoablation.

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