Clinical significance of prolonged sinoatrial conduction time.
Prolonged (greater than 152 msec) calculated sinoatrial conduction times (SACT) were found in 24 of 470 patients studied by the atrial extrastimulus technique, ranging from 155 to 220 msec (180+/-4.4; mean+/-SEM). There were 18 males and six females with ages of 29 to 85 (mean 65+/-2.6). Electrocardiographic monitoring revealed significant sinus or atrial dysrhythmias in 19 (79%) patients. Of these 19, 15 had persistent sinus bradycardia and/or sinoatrial block, three had sinus bradyarrhythmia with paroxysmal atrial tachycardia, and one had isolated atrial tachycardia. Additional electrophysiological evidence of sinus node or atrial dysfunction was present in 11 patients. Four patients needed permanent pacing during follow-up (mean follow-up period of 427+/-39 days) because of symptomatic bradyarrhythmia. Three patients died, none suddenly. In conclusion, prolonged calculated SACT was associated with a high incidence of electrocardiographic and electrophysiologic abnormalities of sinus node and/or atrium. Despite this, bradyarrhythmic morbidity was relatively low, suggesting that prolonged sinoatrial conduction time in the absence of symptoms is not an indication for prophylactic pacing.
- Copyright © 1977 by American Heart Association