Abstract 2754: Pulmonary Vein Isolation Using Irrigated vs. Conventional 4-mm Tip Catheters- Do Short and Long-Term Outcomes Differ?
Open saline-irrigated tip ablation catheters have largely supplanted standard 4 mm tip ablation catheters for pulmonary vein isolation (PVI) of atrial fibrillation (AF), based on the assumption that the procedure is safer and more efficacious. However, outcomes after procedures that use identical techniques but different radiofrequency ablation catheters have not been compared. We studied 432 consecutive patients (age 57 ± 11 yrs) with AF (duration 7.9 ± 6.1 yrs) who underwent PVI; 320 (74 %) using a conventional 4 mm catheter and 112 (26 %) using an open irrigated tip catheter. Segmental PVI targeting the earliest LA-PV activation for all PVs in each patient was used for all patients regardless of catheter for the entire study cohort. Radiofrequency energy was delivered for ≥60 secs at each target site. The pts in the 2 groups were similar with respect to age, gender and duration of AF. All 432 pts had successful complete PVI. There was no significant difference in the total number of lesions delivered per PV in the conventional 4 mm group and the irrigated tip group (Table⇓) at the initial procedure. Following a single procedure, 227/ 320 (71%) patients in the conventional 4 mm and 75/112 (67%) in the irrigated group were AF-free on no antiarrhythmic drug at 12 mos (p=0.43). The number of patients who required repeat procedures was similar in the conventional group (57/320, 18%) and the irrigated tip group (22/112, 20%) (p=0.66). Serious complications were also similar (2.2% vs. 1.0 %, p=0.21) Contrary to conventional wisdom, the safety and 12 month efficacy of PVI for management of AF was similar for the two types of ablation catheters. These data suggest that PVI cohorts derived from differing ablation techniques can be combined for purposes of clinical investigation. Longer term outcomes may differ and should be studied as well.