Author + information
- Received June 11, 1996
- Revision received July 30, 1997
- Accepted August 21, 1997
- Published online December 1, 1997.
- David J Callans, MD, FACCA,* (, )
- David Schwartzman, MD, FACCA,
- Charles D Gottlieb, MD, FACCA,
- Stephen M Dillon, PhD, FACCA and
- Francis E Marchlinski, MD, FACCA
- ↵*Dr. David J. Callans, Allegheny University of the Health Sciences–MCP Division, Division of Cardiology, Suite 803, 3300 Henry Avenue, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19029.
Objectives. We sought to characterize the excitable gap of the reentrant circuit in atrial flutter.
Background. The electrophysiologic substrate of typical atrial flutter has not been well characterized. Specifically, it is not known whether the properties of the tricuspid valve isthmus differ from those of the remainder of the circuit.
Methods. Resetting was performed from two sites within the circuit: proximal (site A) and distal (site B) to the isthmus in 14 patients with type I atrial flutter. Resetting response patterns and the location where interval-dependent conduction slowing occurred were assessed.
Results. Some duration of a flat resetting response (mean ± SD 40.1 ± 20.9 ms, 16 ± 8% of the cycle length) was observed in 13 of 14 patients; 1 patient had a purely increasing response. During the increasing portion of the resetting curve, interval-dependent conduction delay most commonly occurred in the isthmus. In most cases, the resetting response was similar at both sites. In three patients, the resetting response differed significantly between the two sites; this finding suggests that paced beats may transiently change conduction within the circuit or the circuit path, or both.
Conclusions. Some duration of a flat resetting response was observed in most cases of type I atrial flutter, signifying a fully excitable gap in all portions of the circuit. The isthmus represents the portion of the circuit most vulnerable to interval-dependent conduction delay at short coupling intervals.
- Received June 11, 1996.
- Revision received July 30, 1997.
- Accepted August 21, 1997.
- The American College of Cardiology