JOURNAL ARTICLE
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Spontaneous accelerated junctional rhythm: an unusual but useful observation prior to radiofrequency catheter ablation for atrioventricular node reentrant tachycardia in young patients.

Between May 1990 and March 1995, 5 of 29 young patients (ages 4.2-25 years; median 14.1 years) undergoing RF ablation for atrioventricular node reentrant tachycardia (AVNRT) presented with spontaneous accelerated junctional rhythm (AJR) (CL = 500-750 ms), compared to 0 of 58 age matched controls undergoing RF ablation for a concealed AV accessory pathway (P = 0.004). In 3 of the 5 patients with AVNRT and AJR, junctional beats served as a trigger for reentry. During attempted slow pathway modification in the five patients with AVNRT and AJR, AVNRT continued to be inducible until the AJR was entirely eliminated or dramatically slowed. These 5 patients are tachycardia-free in followup (median 15 months; range 6-31 months) with only 1 of the 5 patients continuing to experience episodic AJR at rates slower than observed preablation. Episodic spontaneous AJR is statistically associated with AVNRT in young patients and can serve as a trigger for reentry. Successful modification of slow pathway conduction may be predicted by the elimination of AJR or its modulation to slower rates, suggesting that the rhythm is secondary to enhanced automaticity arising near or within the slow pathway.

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