Epicardial ablation of ventricular tachycardia in ischemic heart disease
Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences
Circulation. Arrhythmia and electrophysiology
, p. 1115-1122
University of Antwerp
Background Epicardial approaches have increased ablation success in nonischemic cardiomyopathy, but the use for postinfarction ventricular tachycardias (VT) is less clear. We report the findings for epicardial VT ablation in postinfarct patients. Methods and Results Records of 444 consecutive patients with VT because of prior infarction referred for 600 catheter ablation procedures were reviewed. Epicardial procedures were performed in the electrophysiology laboratory in 56 (13%) patients using percutaneous (43 patients) or surgical (13 patients) epicardial access. In 7 patients, epicardial ablation was performed surgically in the operating room. In the electrophysiology laboratory epicardial VT targets were identified in 38 (68%) patients and epicardial ablation abolished 1 VT in 27 patients (6% of the total study population); inducibility was not tested after ablation in 4, and VT remained inducible in 7 patients. No ablation was performed in 18 (32%) patients because of no accessible epicardial target or a complication. Major complications occurred in 8 (14%) of the 57 electrophysiology laboratory procedures. After the first procedure any VT recurred in 21 (54%) of 39 patients who had epicardial ablation compared with 164 (47%) of 347 endocardial-only ablation patients (P=0.35). Conclusions Epicardial ablation is potentially useful in 6% of the postinfarction VT population, but the number could be substantially greater because more than two thirds of patients selected for epicardial mapping after failed ablation had an epicardial VT target. Successful epicardial ablation of a VT was not predictable from infarct location or other patient characteristics.