Differences in repeating patterns of complex fractionated left atrial electrograms in longstanding persistent atrial fibrillation as compared with paroxysmal atrial fibrillation

Edward J. Ciaccio, Angelo B. Biviano, William Whang, John A. Vest, Alok Gambhir, Andrew J. Einstein, Hasan Garan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background-Complex fractionated atrial electrograms (CFAE) are morphologically more uniform in persistent longstanding as compared with paroxysmal atrial fibrillation (AF). It was hypothesized that this may result from a greater degree of repetitiveness in CFAE patterns at disparate left atrial (LA) sites in longstanding AF. Methods and Results-CFAEs were obtained from recording sites outside the 4 pulmonary vein (PV) ostia and at a posterior and an anterior LA site during paroxysmal and longstanding persistent AF (10 patients each, 120 sequences total). To quantify repetitiveness in CFAE, the dominant frequency was measured from ensemble spectra using 8.4-second sequences, and repetitiveness was calculated by 2 novel techniques: linear prediction and Fourier reconstruction methods. Lower prediction and reconstruction errors were considered indicative of increasing repetitiveness and decreasing randomness. In patients with paroxysmal AF, CFAE pattern repetitiveness was significantly lower (randomness higher) at antral sites outside PV ostia as compared with LA free wall sites (P<0.001). In longstanding AF, repetitiveness increased outside the PV ostia, especially outside the left superior PV ostium, and diminished at the LA free wall sites. The result was that in persistent AF, there were no significant site-specific differences in CFAE repetitiveness at the selected LA locations used in this study. Average dominant frequency magnitude was 5.32±0.29 Hz in paroxysmal AF and higher in longstanding AF, at 6.27±0.13 Hz (P<0.001), with the frequency of local activation approaching a common upper bound for all sites. Conclusions-In paroxysmal AF, CFAE repetitiveness is low and randomness high outside the PVs, particularly the left superior PV. As evolution to persistent longstanding AF occurs, CFAE repetitiveness becomes more uniformly distributed at disparate sites, possibly signifying an increasing number of drivers from remote PVs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)470-477
Number of pages8
JournalCirculation: Arrhythmia and Electrophysiology
Volume4
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2011
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Atrial fibrillation
  • CFAE
  • Dominant frequency
  • Ensemble average
  • Linear prediction

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