Transesophageal Electrophysiology

Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome. Value of transesophageal atrial stimulation coupled with exercise test for the study of anterograde conduction in the accessory pathway.

Cebron JP, Le Marec H, Victor J, Chevallier JC, Borgat C, Godin JF. Hopital Laennec, Nantes. Arch Mal Coeur Vaiss 1989 Feb;82(2):159-66. In patients with Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome the anterograde conduction properties of the accessory pathway determine the ventricular rate in case of atrial fibrillation (AF). Anterograde conduction in the accessory pathway was evaluated in 20 patients (mean age 31 years) by means of transoesophageal atrial pacing with increasing frequency (up to 460 per minute), first at rest, then during exercise on an ergometric bicycle and upon immediate recovery. The exploration was completed by a search for the disappearance of pre-excitation during exercise and after an intravenous injection of ajmaline 1 mg/kg. The shortest cycle (SC) of atrial pacing with 1:1 conduction by the accessory pathway regularly decreased by 80 +/- 26 ms (n = 18), i.e. 27 p. 100 of its value at rest. At immediate recovery SC increased by 40 +/- 53 ms (n = 9). Atrial fibrillation was induced at rest and/or during exercise in 12 patients. The shortest interval (SI) between two pre-excited ventricular complexes was 290 +/- 80 ms (n = 8) at rest and 244 +/- 53 ms (n = 8) during exercise. With a substantial group of values (n = 12) there was good correlation between SC and SI both at rest and during exercise. With a smaller group of values (n = 3) SI was clearly greater than SC, suggesting a concealed conduction in the accessory pathway during atrial fibrillation. Disappearance of pre-excitation during exercise was observed in 4 patients, 3 of whom had a short (less than 250 ms) SC and/or SI.

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