Effectiveness of radiofrequency catheter ablation for treatment of atrial tachycardia

Jeffrey Goldberger, John Kall, Frederick Ehlert, Barbara Deal, Brian Olshansky, D. Woodrow Benson, Jeffrey Baerman, Douglas Kopp, Alan Kadish, David Wilber

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

64 Scopus citations


Catheter ablation has been used to treat atrioventricular node reentrant and atrioventricular reentrant tachycardias with extremely high success rates. The suitability of catheter ablation for treatment of atrial tachycardia, a much less common type of supraventricular tachycardia, has not been well addressed. Fifteen patients (8 females) ranging from 10 to 83 years (mean 38 ± 22) were referred for catheter ablation of supraventricular tachycardia. The diagnosis of atrial tachycardia was established by standard electrophysiologic techniques. A combination of activation and pace mapping was used to identify a suitable site for radiofrequency current catheter ablation. Medical therapy was unsuccessful in all but 1 patient. Two patients had surgically corrected congenital heart disease, 2 had coronary artery disease and 1 had dilated cardiomyopathy. Seven patients had depressed left ventricular function. Six patients had incessant tachycardias. Presumed tachycardia mechanism was automatic in 11 patients and reentrant in 4. Mean tachycardia cycle length was 372 ± 74 ms. Catheter ablation was acutely successful in 12 patients (80%) with application of 11.1 ± 6.6 lesions at a mean voltage of 60 ± 9 V. In the other 3 patients, 16 to 38 lesions were applied. At a mean follow-up of 18.5 ± 6.5 months, 2 patients have had recurrences with different P-wave morphologies and underwent a second successful catheter ablation procedure. An additional 2 patients had recurrences with the same P-wave morphology and 1 underwent a second successful catheter ablation procedure. Thus, radiofrequency ablation can be used in a diverse population of patients with atrial tachycardia with an acute success rate of 80% and a long-term success rate of 73%.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)787-793
Number of pages7
JournalThe American Journal of Cardiology
Issue number11
StatePublished - Oct 1 1993
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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