Transesophageal Cardioversion and Defibrillation

Combined transesophageal left atrial pacing and antiarrhythmic therapy in the treatment of atrial flutter.

Matiouchine GV, Shulman VA, Balog AI, Bezruk AP, Golovenkin SE. Krasnoyarsk Medical Academy, Russia. Pacing Clin Electrophysiol 1996;19(11 Pt 2):1947-50 In order to terminate atrial flutter (AF) overdrive transesophageal left atrial pacing (TELAP) was performed in 760 patients with paroxysmal AF. There were 315 women and 415 men (mean age 59 years). In 260 patients, TELAP was used in an outpatient setting. Approximately half of the patients (51%) had coronary artery disease and/or arterial hypertension, and 23% of the patients had no structural heart disease. The duration of AF ranged between 1 hour and 1 month. TELAP was performed in 312 patients without any antiarrhythmic drug (AAD) administration (group I) and in 448 patients after administration of AAD (procainamide and/or amiodarone) in conventional doses (group II). TELAP resulted in immediate return of sinus rhythm in 85 patients (27%) of group I and in 222 patients (50%) of group II (P < 0.001). TELAP converted AF to atrial fibrillation (AFIB) in 185 of group I (59%) and in 214 (48%) of the group II patients (P < 0.01). In addition, within 1-2 days after TELAP AFIB converted to sinus rhythm spontaneously or after AAD in 87 patients of group I (28%) and in 84 (19%) of the group II patients (P < 0.01). In general sinus rhythm was restored in 172 (55%) of the group I and in 306 (68%) of the group II patients (P < 0.005). AF was converted to AFIB in 98 (31%) of the group I and in 130 (29%) of the patients in group II patients (NS). TELAP was ineffective in 42 (13.5%) of the group I and in 12 (3%) of the group II patients (P < 0.001). TELAP was an effective noninvasive method for the treatment of recent onset AF. Our experience showed that after TELAP, sinus rhythm was restored in most of the patients with paroxysmal AF within 1-2 days. In some patients TELAP converted AF to AFIB, making it easier to control the heart rate with AAD. Treatment with AAD before TELAP increased its effectiveness.

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