Author + information
- Received June 5, 2007
- Revision received October 4, 2007
- Accepted October 18, 2007
- Published online December 18, 2007.
- Sanjiv M. Narayan, MD, FRCP, FACC⁎,⁎ (, )
- Michael R. Franz, MD, PhD†,
- Gautam Lalani, MD⁎,
- Jason Kim, BS⁎ and
- Ashwani Sastry, MD⁎,‡
- ↵⁎Reprint requests and correspondence:
Dr. Sanjiv M. Narayan, Director of Electrophysiology, San Diego VA Medical Center, University of California, San Diego, Cardiology/111A, 3350 La Jolla Village Drive, San Diego, California 92161.
Objectives Our aim was to study the relationship between T-wave alternans (TWA) and rate-response (restitution) of repolarization in subjects with and without ventricular systolic dysfunction.
Background T-wave alternans is a promising predictor of sudden death, yet the mechanisms linking it with human ventricular arrhythmias are unclear. From theoretic considerations, we hypothesized that abnormal TWA is linked with steep restitution of action potential duration (APD) and that both predict arrhythmic outcome.
Methods We studied 53 subjects with left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) ≤40% and 18 control subjects. At electrophysiologic study, we recorded APD at 90% repolarization (APD90) in the right (n = 62) or left (n = 9) ventricle during pacing while measuring TWA from the body surface.
Results As expected, TWA (at <109 beats/min) was more likely to be abnormal in study than in control subjects (p < 0.01). However, study (LVEF 28 ± 8%) and control (LVEF 58 ± 12%) subjects did not differ in APD90restitution slope maxima (1.2 ± 0.6 vs. 1.3 ± 0.6, respectively; p = 0.82) or numbers with steep slope (>1; 58% vs. 67%). T-wave alternans and simultaneous APD alternans always occurred at diastolic intervals where APD restitution was not steep (p < 0.001), and there was no relationship between maximum restitution slope and TWA magnitude. Over 829 ± 473 days, TWA (p = 0.02), but not restitution slope >1, predicted ventricular arrhythmias in subjects with LVEF ≤40%.
Conclusions The mechanism by which TWA predicts arrhythmic mortality does not reflect the maximum slope of ventricular APD restitution. Better understanding of the mechanisms underlying TWA may enable improved prediction and prevention of ventricular arrhythmias.
Supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health (HL 70529, “The Pathophysiology of T-Wave Alternans”) with additional support from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and the American Heart Association (0265120Y) to Dr. Narayan. Dr. Narayan has received speaking honoraria from Cambridge Heart and is a member of the speakers’ bureau for Guidant/Boston Scientific, Medtronic, and St. Jude Medical Corporation. Presented in part at the 2007 Annual Scientific Sessions of the Heart Rhythm Society. David S. Rosenbaum, MD, served as Guest Editor for this article.
- Received June 5, 2007.
- Revision received October 4, 2007.
- Accepted October 18, 2007.
- American College of Cardiology Foundation