Current and state of the art on the electrophysiologic characteristics and catheter ablation of arrhythmogenic right ventricular dysplasia/cardiomyopathy

Fa Po Chung, Yenn Jiang Lin, Shih Lin Chang, Li Wei Lo, Yu Feng Hu, Ta Chuan Tuan, Tze Fan Chao, Jo Nan Liao, Chuen Wang Chiou, Shih Ann Chen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Arrhythmogenic right ventricular dysplasia/cardiomyopathy (ARVD/C) is an inherited genetic disease caused by defective desmosomal proteins, and it has typical histopathological features characterized by predominantly progressive fibro-fatty infiltration of the right ventricle. Clinical presentations of ARVD/C vary from syncope, progressive heart failure (HF), ventricular tachyarrhythmias, and sudden cardiac death (SCD). The 2010 modified Task Force criteria were established to facilitate the recognition and diagnosis of ARVD/C. An implantable cardiac defibrillator (ICD) remains to be the cornerstone in prevention of SCD in patients fulfilling the diagnosis of definite ARVD/C, especially among ARVD/C patients with syncope, hemodynamically unstable ventricular tachycardia (VT), ventricular fibrillation, and aborted SCD. Further risk stratification is clinically valuable in the management of patients with borderline or possible ARVD/C and mutation carriers of family members. However, given the entity of heterogeneous penetrance and non-uniform phenotypes, the standardization of clinical practice guidelines for at-risk individuals will be the next frontier to breakthrough.Antiarrhythmic drugs are prescribed frequently to patients experiencing frequent ventricular tachyarrhythmias and/or appropriate ICD shocks. Amiodarone is the recommended drug of choice. Radiofrequency catheter ablation (RFCA) has been demonstrated to effectively eliminate the drug-refractory VT in patients with ARVD/C. However, the efficacy and clinical prognosis of RFCA via endocardial approach alone was disappointing prior to the era of epicardial approach. In recent years, it has been proven that the integration of endocardial and epicardial ablation by targeting the critical isthmus or eliminating abnormal electrograms within the diseased substrates could yield higher acute success and lower recurrence of ventricular tachyarrhythmias during long-term follow-up. Heart transplantation is the final option for patients with extensive disease, biventricular HF with uncontrollable hemodynamic compromise, and refractory ventricular tachyarrhythmias despite aggressive medical and ablation therapies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)441-450
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Cardiology
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2015


  • Arrhythmogenic right ventricular dysplasia/cardiomyopathy
  • Catheter ablation
  • Electrophysiology
  • Sudden cardiac death
  • Ventricular tachyarrhythmias


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