Ten patients are described with two discrete discontinulties in AV nodal conduction curves suggesting triple antegrade AV nodal pathways. This represents approximately 6% of patients seen in this laboratory with dual AV nodal pathways. Patients ranged in age from 18 to 63 (mean ± Sd, 48 ± 15 years). Six of the 10 patients had organic heart disease and four did not. The effect of cycle length on triple pathways could be analyzed in 8 of 10 patients who had atrial extrastimulus testing at two or more cycle lengths. Three of these eight patients had triple pathways at all tested cycle lengths. Four patients had triple pathways only at shorter cycle lengths. One patient had triple pathways only at longer cycle lengths. Intact retrograde conduction was demonstrated in seven of ten patients, all of whom had atrial echoes (two patients) or inducible supraventricular tachycardia (SVT) (five patients). Echoes or SVT were induced on the slow pathway is all seven patients, but also on the intermediate pathway in three. However, sustained SVT usually reflected antegrade slow and retrograde fast pathway conduction. In conclusion. triple AV nodal pathways may be demonstrated in occasional patients during atrial extrastimulus testing. Thereby, functional longitudinal dissociation of the AV node is not limited to two pathways.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine