Ventricular fusion during resetting and entrainment of orthodromic supraventricular tachycardia involving septal accessory pathways. Implications for the differential diagnosis with atrioventricular nodal reentry.
BACKGROUND Ventricular fusion during transient entrainment of orthodromic atrioventricular reciprocating tachycardias (OAVRT) was originally found to be absent and recently observed only with left ventricular stimulation. However, previous studies were restricted to cases with a left free wall accessory pathway. The hypothesis of the present study was that fusion is likely during resetting and entrainment of OAVRT with right ventricular stimulation if the accessory pathway is septally located, since its insertion is relatively close to the stimulation site. This phenomenon can help in the differential diagnosis with atrioventricular nodal reentry (AVNR).
METHODS AND RESULTS We performed programmed right ventricular stimulation during regular inducible supraventricular tachycardia with concentric atrial activation in 44 patients--20 with OAVRT and 24 with AVNR. Fusion in the ECG morphology of extrastimuli producing resetting was observed in 19 of 19 OAVRT but in 0 of 11 AVNR reset (P < .001). Transient entrainment was demonstrated in all 31 cases undergoing rapid ventricular pacing (14 OAVRT and 17 AVNR). Entrainment with fusion occurred in 13 of 14 OAVRT and in 0 of 17 AVNR (P < .001). Fusion was critically dependent on the coupling intervals or pacing rates, sometimes having a narrow window for its observation.
CONCLUSIONS The relative proximity (conduction time) among pacing site, site of entrance to a reentrant circuit, and site of exit from the circuit to the paced chamber are critical for the occurrence of fusion during resetting and/or entrainment. The presence or absence of fusion during these phenomena can help in the differential diagnosis of certain supraventricular tachycardias.
- Copyright © 1993 by American Heart Association