Background: The efficacy of ablation of complex fractionated atrial electrograms (CFEs) in the single ablation procedure for nonparoxysmal atrial fibrillation (AF) patients is not well demonstrated. The aim of this study was to compare the ablation strategies of pulmonary vein isolation (PVI) plus linear ablation with and without additional ablation of CFEs in these patients. Methods: Consecutive 60 patients (49 ± 11 years old, 50 male, 10 female) with nonparoxysmal AF underwent catheter ablation guided by a NavX mapping system. A stepwise approach included a circumferential PVI and left atrial (LA) linear ablation followed by either the additional ablation of continuous CFEs in the LA-coronary sinus (the first 30 patients) or not (the second 30 patients), detected by an automatic algorithm. Results: There was no difference in the baseline characteristics between the two groups. Complete PVI eliminated some continuous CFEs and altered the distribution of CFEs. Following PVI and linear ablation, the remaining continuous CFEs were identified in 7.9 ± 10% mapping sites of the LA and CS, and were ablated successfully with a procedural AF termination rate of 53%. With a follow-up of 19 ± 11 months, a Kaplan-Meier analysis showed that the patients with additional ablation of the CFEs had a higher rate of sinus rhythm maintenance. Multivariate analysis showed the single procedure success could be predicted by the procedural AF termination and the additional ablation of continuous CFEs in the LA-CS. Conclusions: Ablation of continuous CFEs after PVI and LA linear ablation had a better long-term efficacy based on the results of single-ablation procedure.
- Atrial fibrillation
- Left atrium