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Ablation in Atrial Fibrillation with Ventricular Pacing Results in Similar Spatial Catheter Stability as Compared to Ablation in Sinus Rhythm with Atrial Pacing

Background: Improved catheter stability is associated with decreased arrhythmia recurrence after atrial fibrillation (AF) ablation. Recently, atrial voltage mapping in AF was demonstrated to correlate better with scar as compared to mapping in sinus rhythm (SR). However, it is unknown whether ablation of persistent AF in sinus rhythm with atrial pacing or in atrial fibrillation with ventricular pacing results in differences incatheter stability or arrhythmia recurrence. Methods: We analyzed 53 consecutive patients undergoing first-time persistent AF ablation with pulmonary vein and posterior wall isolation: 27 were cardioverted, mapped, and ablated in sinus rhythm with atrial pacing, and 26 were mapped and ablated in AF with ventricular pacing. Ablation data was extracted from the mapping system and analyzed using custom MATLAB software to determine high-frequency (60Hz) catheter excursion as a novel metric for catheter spatial stability. Results: There was no difference in catheter stability as assessed by maximal catheter excursion, mean catheter excursion, or contact force variabilitybetween the atrial-paced and ventricular-paced patients. Ventricular-paced patients had significantly greater mean contact force as compared to atrial-paced patients. Contact-force variability demonstrated poor correlation with catheter excursion. Oneyear arrhythmia-free survival was similar between the atrial paced and ventricular paced patients. Conclusion: For patients with persistent AF, ablation in AF with ventricular pacing results in similar catheter stability and arrhythmia recurrence as compared to cardioversion and ablation in sinus rhythm with atrial pacing. Given the improved fidelity of mapping in AF, mapping and ablating during AF with ventricular pacing may be preferred.

Credits: Matthew Dai MD, Chirag Barbhaiya MD,Anthony Aizer MD, Jonathan Hyde BS, Edward Kogan MD, Douglas Holmes MD, Scott Bernstein MD, Michael Spinelli MD, David S. Park MD PhD, Larry A. Chinitz MD, Lior Jankelson MD PhD

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Introduction to AFib
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