Circulation Journal
Online ISSN : 1347-4820
Print ISSN : 1346-9843
ISSN-L : 1346-9843
Conduction Recovery After Electrical Isolation of Superior Vena Cava
– Prevalence and Electrophysiological Properties –
Shinsuke MiyazakiHiroshi TaniguchiShigeki KusaTakashi UchiyamaKenzo HiraoYoshito Iesaka
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2013 Volume 77 Issue 2 Pages 352-358


Background: Superior vena cava (SVC) is an infrequent yet an important source of atrial fibrillation (AF). The data on SVC reconnection are limited. Methods and Results: Following pulmonary vein (PV) antrum isolation for AF, SVC isolation was systemically performed under angiographic and mapping guidance using 4-mm non-irrigated tip catheter. SVC reconnection could be evaluated in 76 consecutive patients (65±9 years, 59 male) who underwent repeat AF ablation after 16±16 months. SVC was isolated at the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th AF ablation procedure in 63, 7, 5 and 1 patient by 7.3±3.1 radiofrequency applications. SVC reconnection was observed in 56 patients (74%). In the majority, the conduction gap was located at the anterolateral SVC-right atrium (RA) junction. After re-isolation of SVC, 2/7 patients (29%) had reconnection at the following procedure. Among 63 patients who underwent PV and SVC isolation at the initial procedure, the prevalence of reconnection for PV and that for SVC were similar (53/63, 84% vs. 46/63, 73%; P=0.129). Dissociated activity, however, was more frequently observed in the PVs than in the SVC (47/63, 73% vs. 10/63, 16%; P<0.0001). During the procedure, AF initiation from a thoracic vein was identified in 19/63 patients (30%). Conclusions: SVC reconnection is common after 1 or more previous isolation procedures undertaken for AF ablation. Its prevalence is similar to that of PV reconnection. The location of the conduction gap varies widely but is most frequently found at the anterolateral SVC-RA junction.  (Circ J 2013; 77: 352–358)

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