Electrophysiologic studies were performed in 119 adults with chronic bifascicular block manifested by right bundle branch block and left anterior hemiblock. The H-V interval was normal in 86 patients and prolonged in 33. The following clinical variables were more frequent (P < 0.05) in patients with a prolonged H-V interval: cardiac third sound, mitral systolic murmur, cardiomegaly on chest roentgenogram, congestive heart failure and cardiac functional class III or IV (New York Heart Association criteria). The following differences in the electrocardiographic and electrophysiologic findings were found: Patients with a prolonged H-V interval had a longer mean P-R interval, QRS duration and A-H interval (P < 0.02). All patients were followed up prospectively in a cardiac conduction disease clinic after initial evaluation. The mean follow-up periods were (mean ± standard error of the mean) 514 ± 49 and 563 ± 34 days for the patients with a prolonged and normal H-V interval, respectively. Progression of conduction disease occurred in three patients (4 percent) with a normal H-V interval and in four (12 percent) with a prolonged interval. The cumulative 3 year mortality rate for the entire group was 25 percent. The patients with a prolonged H-V interval had a higher cumulative 2 year mortality rate than those with a normal H-V interval but the difference was not statistically significant. In summary, a prolonged H-V interval was often associated with serious myocardial dysfunction and a high mortality rate. The risk of progression of conduction disease was slight with either a prolonged or a normal H-V interval during this relatively short follow-up period.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine