Mechanism of the Auricular Arrhythmias
The four auricular arrhythmias, premature systoles, paroxysmal tachycardia, flutter, and fibrillation, have been investigated in over 200 dogs by three methods: (1) high speed cinematography, (2) cathode-ray oscillography, and (3) multiple-channel electrocardiography. The hitherto unexplored body of the left auricle has been surgically exposed and thoroughly studied. Results indicate that all four arrhythmias are of unitary origin and may occur from one ectopic focus. The resulting arrhythmia depends largely upon the rate of discharge from that focus. There is no circus movement. Corroborative observations have been made on the arrhythmias in man. This conception of the auricular arrhythmias simplifies the understanding of their mechanism.
- © 1950 American Heart Association, Inc.