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A Journal on Heart and Vascular Diseases

Official Journal of the Italian Society of Angiology and Vascular Pathology
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Minerva Cardioangiologica 2008 December;56(6):635-41

language: English

Outcome of atrial fibrillation ablation: assessment of success

Lickfett L., Remerie S., Mittmann-Braun E., Nickenig G.

Department of Medicine-Cardiology University of Bonn, Bonn, Germany


Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common sustained cardiac arrhythmia with a prevalence in the general population of approximately 1%. Catheter ablation has emerged from being a highly experimental procedure to one of the most common ablation performed in many electrophysiology laboratories throughout the world. The stability of sinus rhythm restored by catheter ablation is important not only for comparison of different ablation techniques, but also for guiding anticoagulation and possible antiarrhythmic drug treatment. It has been shown that asymptomatic AF after ablation is at least as common as before the ablation. Rhythm assessment is therefore a key component of post AF ablation follow-up. A variety of electrocardiogram (ECG) monitoring techniques is available. Besides of technical characteristics such as the number of recording leads and further signal processing, these techniques differ mainly in the duration of ECG recordings and the involvement of the patient. Intermittent rhythm monitoring techniques include standard 12-lead ECG, Holter-ECG of various duration, patient activated external loop ECG recorder as well as patient activated transtelephonic ECG monitor. Continuous ECG represents the gold standard for rhythm monitoring recording and can be achieved by means of a pacemaker, implan-table defibrillator or implantable cardiac ECG monitor.

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