Transesophageal Electrophysiology

Reproducibility of transesophageal pacing in patients with Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome.

Fenici R, Ruggieri MP, di Lillo M, Fenici P. Catholic University of Rome, Italy. Pacing Clin Electrophysiol 1996 Nov;19(11 Pt 2):1951-7  The purpose of this study was to assess, in patients with ventricular preexcitation, the time dependent physiological variation of antegrade conduction properties in the AV node and in accessory pathways (Aps) as a function of autonomic tone variation induced by posture and physical effort, using noninvasive transesophageal atrial pacing. In 74 WPW patients (mean age 21.31 +/- 9.46 yrs), AV node and Kent antegrade effective refractory periods (at pacing cycle lengths 600, 400, and 320 ms), Wenckebach point, shortest preexcited RR intervals during sustained atrial fibrillation (AF) or atrial pacing, as well as the inducibility of AV reentry tachycardia (AVRT) and AF/flutter (AFL) were assessed. All measurements were carried out at rest, in supine and upright positions, and during effort. A second study was carried out approximately 3 months after the first study. The coefficient of variation (CVs) and reproducibility (CRs) were calculated. For each parameter, the differences between the mean of the two studies were not statistically significant. The CVs and CRs ranged between 0.4% and 4% and between 2 and 28 ms, respectively. AF was induced in 40 (54%) of 74 patients at the first study and in 30 (40.5%) of 74 patients at the second study. AVRT was induced in 33 (45%) of 74 patients at the first study and in 38 (51.3%) of 74 patients at the second study. The reproducibility was 45% for AF/AFL and 65% for reentry tachycardia. Transesophageal atrial pacing is a reliable method for noninvasive reproducible evaluation of antegrade electrophysiological properties of both the AV node and APs in WPW patients. However, the effect of autonomic balance variation has to be taken into account and precisely defined because it may significantly affect the inducibility of supraventricular arrhythmias and the estimation of the absolute values of the vulnerable parameters.

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