Effects of simultaneous atrioventricular pacing on atrial refractoriness and atrial fibrillation inducibility: Role of atrial mechanoelectrical feedback

Hung Fat Tse, Frank Pelosi, Hakan Oral, Bradley P. Knight, S. Adam Strickberger, Fred Morady*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Scopus citations

Abstract

Atrial Mechanoelectrical Feedback. Introduction: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of an acute increase in atrial pressure on refractoriness (mechanoelectrical feedback) and the vulnerability to atrial fibrillation (AF) and to investigate the effects of autonomic blockade and verapamil on mechanoelectrical feedback in humans. Methods and Results: Right atrial pressure and effective refractory period (ERP) at the right atrial appendage (RAA) and high right atrial septum were measured during sinus rhythm, and during atrial and simultaneous AV pacing at a cycle length of 300 msec, either in the absence (n = 25) or presence (n = 22) of pharmacologic autonomic blockade. In another 15 patients, the protocol was performed before and after infusion of verapamil 0.15 mg/kg. In the absence of autonomic blockade, AV pacing resulted in a higher mean right atrial pressure (11.7 ± 3.3 vs 4.3 ± 3.0 mmHg, P < 0,001) and a shorter atrial RAA ERP (144 ± 23 msec vs 161 ± 21 msec; P < 0.001) compared with atrial pacing; AF was induced more often during AV pacing (87%) than during atrial pacing (20%) and was related directly to the right atrial pressure (r = 0.39, P = 0.004) and indirectly to the RAA ERP (r = -0.42, P < 0.001). The susceptibility to sustained AF was greatly enhanced by autonomic blockade. Verapamil markedly attenuated the shortening of ERP and the propensity for AF that occurred during simultaneous AV pacing. Conclusion: An acute increase in atrial pressure during tachycardia is associated with shortening of atrial refractoriness and a propensity for AF, i.e., atrial mechanoelectrical feedback, which may be enhanced by autonomic blockade and attenuated by calcium channel blockade.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)43-50
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of cardiovascular electrophysiology
Volume12
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 2001

Keywords

  • Atrial fibrillation
  • Atrial refractory period
  • Mechanoelectrical feedback

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)

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