Catheter-induced mechanical trauma to accessory pathways during radiofrequency ablation: incidence, predictors and clinical implications.
OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the incidence, predictors and clinical implications of nonintentionally catheter-induced mechanical trauma to accessory pathways during radiofrequency ablation procedures. BACKGROUND: Data on the incidence and significance of catheter-induced trauma to accessory pathways are scarce. METHODS: Consecutive patients (n = 381) undergoing radiofrequency ablation of accessory pathways at two different institutions were closely monitored for appearance of mechanical block of accessory pathways during catheter manipulation. RESULTS: Mechanical trauma to accessory pathways was observed in 37 (9.7%) patients. According to a multivariate analysis, the only independent variable associated with this phenomenon was the anatomical pathway location (p = 0.0001). The incidence of trauma of either right anteroseptal (38.5%) or right atriofascicular pathways (33.3%) was significantly greater than that of pathways (< or =10%) at all remaining locations (p < 0.0001). The duration of conduction block observed ranged from < or =1 min to >30 min in 19% and 35% of patients, respectively. "Immediate" application of radiofrequency pulses at sites of mechanical block (<1 min after occurrence) was associated with a 78% long-term success rate at follow-up. This contrasted with a 25% long-term success rate in patients in whom pulses were delivered 30 min after occurrence of block ("delayed pulses"). Finally, in 24% of patients persistent trauma-induced conduction block led to discontinuation of the ablation procedure. CONCLUSIONS: Trauma to accessory pathways is more common than previously recognized and frequently results in prolongation or discontinuation of the ablation procedure and in lower success rates. The only independent predictor of catheter-trauma to accessory pathways is the pathway location. (+info)
Intraoperative left ventricular perforation with false aneurysm formation.
Two cases of perforation of the left ventricle during mitral valve replacement are described. In the first case there was perforation at the site of papillary muscle excision and this was recognized and successfully treated. However, a true ventricular aneurysm developed at the repair site. One month after operation rupture of the left ventricle occurred at a second and separate site on the posterior aspect of the atrioventricular ring. This resulted in a false aneurysm which produced a pansystolic murmur mimicking mitral regurgitation. Both the true and the false aneurysm were successfully repaired. In the second case perforation occurred on the posterior aspect of the atrioventricular ring and was successfully repaired. However, a false ventricular aneurysm developed and ruptured into the left atrium producing severe, but silent, mitral regurgitation. This was recognized and successfully repaired. The implications of these cases are discussed. (+info)
Fatal outcome arising from use of a sutureless "corkscrew" epicardial pacing electrode inserted into apex of left ventricle.
A 59-year-old man is described in whom the insertion of an epicardial sutureless "corkscrew" electrode resulted in fatal ventricular perforation. Fatal myocardial perforation can occur with this electrode and the apex of the left ventricle should never be used as the site of insertion. Necropsy also showed that the transvenous right ventricular electrode, inserted one year previously, had penetrated a tricuspid leaflet. This could have accounted for the ensuing pacing failure. (+info)
Survival, integration, and differentiation of cardiomyocyte grafts: a study in normal and injured rat hearts.
BACKGROUND: Cardiomyocyte grafting augments myocyte numbers in the heart. We investigated (1) how developmental stage influences graft survival; (2) whether acutely necrotic or healing cardiac lesions support grafts; and (3) the differentiation and integration of cardiomyocyte grafts in injured hearts. METHODS AND RESULTS: Cardiomyocytes from fetal, neonatal, or adult inbred rats were grafted into normal myocardium, acutely cryoinjured myocardium, or granulation tissue (6 days after injury). Adult cardiomyocytes did not survive under any conditions. In contrast, fetal and neonatal cardiomyocytes formed viable grafts under all conditions. Time-course studies with neonatal cardiomyocytes showed that the grafts recapitulated many aspects of normal development. The adherens junction protein N-cadherin was distributed circumferentially at day 1 but began to organize into intercalated disk-like structures by day 6. The gap junction protein connexin43 followed a similar but delayed pattern relative to N-cadherin. From 2 to 8 weeks, there was progressive hypertrophy and the formation of mature intercalated disks. In some hearts, graft cells formed adherens and gap junctions with host cardiomyocytes, suggesting electromechanical coupling. More commonly, however, grafts were separated from the host myocardium by scar tissue. Gap and adherens junctions formed between neonatal and adult cardiomyocytes in coculture, as evidenced by dye transfer and localization of cadherin and connexin43 at intercellular junctions. CONCLUSIONS: Grafted fetal and neonatal cardiomyocytes form new, mature myocardium with the capacity to couple with injured host myocardium. Optimal repair, however, may require reducing the isolation of the graft by the intervening scar tissue. (+info)
Detection of myocardial injury during transvenous implantation of automatic cardioverter-defibrillators.
OBJECTIVES: The present study was designed to assess the extent of myocardial injury in patients undergoing transvenous implantation of an automatic implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) using cardiac troponin I (cTNI), which is a highly specific marker of structural cardiac injury. BACKGROUND: During ICD implantation, repetitive induction and termination of ventricular fibrillation (VF) via endocardial direct current shocks is required to demonstrate the correct function of the device. Transthoracic electrical shocks can cause myocardial cell injury. METHODS: Measurements of total creatine kinase (CK), CK-MB, myoglobin, cardiac troponin T (cTNT) and cTNI were obtained before and after ICD implantation in 49 consecutive patients. Blood samples were drawn before and 2, 4, 8, and 24 h after implantation. RESULTS: Elevations of CK, CK-MB, myoglobin, cTNT and cTNI above cut-off level were found in 25%, 6%, 76%, 37% and 14% of patients, respectively, with peak cTNI concentrations ranging from 1.7 to 5.5 ng/ml. Cumulative defibrillation energy (DFE), mean DFE, cumulative VF time, number of shocks as well as prior myocardial infarction (MI) were found to be significantly related to a rise of cTNI. Mean DFE > or = 18 J and a recent MI were identified as strong risk factors for cTNI rise. CONCLUSIONS: During transvenous ICD implantation myocardial injury as assessed by cTNI rise occurs in about 14% of the patients. Peak cTNI concentrations are only minimally elevated reflecting subtle myocardial cell damage. Patients with a recent MI and a mean DFE > or = 18 J seem to be prone to cTNI rise. (+info)
Detection of myocardial injury during radiofrequency catheter ablation by measuring serum cardiac troponin I levels: procedural correlates.
OBJECTIVES: In the present prospective controlled study, we measured blood levels of cardiac troponin I (cTnI) in patients undergoing radiofrequency (RF) catheter ablation (RFA), and we sought to investigate the degree of myocardial injury incurred by the application of RF energy and determine its procedural correlates. BACKGROUND: Measurement of serum creatine kinase (CK) levels after RFA may underestimate the degree of myocardial injury due to its thermal inactivation by RFA. Cardiac troponin I is a newer, more specific marker of myocardial injury, which may circumvent this limitation; its use in this setting has rarely been studied. METHODS: In 118 consecutive patients, 67 men and 51 women aged 38 +/- 19 years undergoing RFA for a variety of arrhythmias, cTnI and creatine kinase isoenzyme (CK-MB) levels were measured before, immediately after and 4 to 24 h after RFA. Cardiac troponin I was also measured in 39 patients (control group) having only electrophysiologic studies (EPS) without RFA. RESULTS: All RFA procedures were uncomplicated, lasted 3.2 +/- 2.0 h and included delivery of 16 +/- 22 (median: 9) RF current applications. Baseline cTnI levels averaged 0.17 +/- 0.18 ng/ml, rose to 0.88 +/- 1.12 at the end of RFA and to 2.19 +/- 2.46 at 4-24 h later. Creatine kinase isoenzyme was found to be elevated (>6 microg/l) in 32 patients (27%), while cTnI levels were increased (> or =1 ng/ml) in 80 patients (68%) (p = 0.0001). Cardiac troponin I levels correlated with the number of RF lesions applied (r = 0.53, p < 0.0001), the site of RFA, being higher with ventricular > atrial > annular lesions (p = 0.012) and the approach to the mitral annulus (transaortic > transseptal, p = 0.004). In a control group of 39 patients undergoing EPS, all but one patient had normal cTnI or CK-MB. CONCLUSIONS: The degree of myocardial injury incurred by RFA is far more accurately assessed by cTnI levels rather than by CK-MB measurements. Cardiac troponin I levels correlate with the number of RF lesions applied, the site of RFA and the approach to the mitral annulus. (+info)
Complications of endomyocardial biopsy in children.
OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the incidence of, and risk factors for, complications of endomyocardial biopsy in children. BACKGROUND: Endomyocardial biopsy (EMB) is a low risk procedure in adults, but there is a paucity of data with regard to performing this procedure in children. METHODS: Retrospective review of the morbidity and mortality of 1,000 consecutive EMB procedures. RESULTS: One thousand EMB procedures (right ventricle 986, left ventricle 14) were performed on 194 patients from July 1987 through March 1996. Indications for EMB included heart transplant rejection surveillance (846) and the evaluation of cardiomyopathy or arrhythmia for possible myocarditis (154). Thirty-seven (4%) procedures were performed on patients receiving intravenous inotropic support. There was one biopsy related death, secondary to cardiac perforation, in a two-week-old infant with dilated cardiomyopathy. There were nine perforations of the right ventricle, eight occurring in patients with dilated cardiomyopathy and one in a transplant recipient. The transplant patient did not require immediate intervention; two patients required pericardiocentesis alone, and six underwent pericardiocentesis and surgical intervention. All nine perforations were from the femoral venous approach (p < 0.01). Multivariate analysis demonstrated that the greatest risk of perforation occurred in children being evaluated for possible myocarditis (p = 0.01) and in those requiring inotropic support (p < 0.01). Other complications included arrhythmia (5) and single cases of coronary-cardiac fistula, flail tricuspid leaflet, pneumothorax, hemothorax, endocardial stripping and seizure. CONCLUSIONS: Risk of endomyocardial biopsy is highest in sick children with suspected myocarditis on inotropic support. However, EMB can be performed safely with very low morbidity in pediatric heart transplant recipients. (+info)
Management of isolated sternal fractures: determining the risk of blunt cardiac injury.
A review of the management of isolated sternal fractures in a regional cardiothoracic unit reveals that, in a 2 year period, 37 consecutive patients were admitted for observation and further investigation, including echocardiography and cardiac enzyme measurements to exclude blunt cardiac injury. Minor blunt cardiac injury was detected in only one patient, and was associated with an acutely abnormal electrocardiogram (ECG). ECG showed acute changes in 8 further patients, whilst 3 patients had an abnormal chest X-ray (CXR) due to widening of the mediastinum (1 patient had abnormal CXR and ECG), but none had evidence of cardiac injury. CXR and ECG were both normal in 23 patients, and were predictive of the absence of significant complications. A survey of 22 other cardiothoracic units around the UK confirms that the management of patients with isolated sternal fractures varies considerably from hospital to hospital. As suggested by previous reports, we believe that patients, who are otherwise fit and have normal ECG and CXR on presentation, can be safely discharged home on oral analgesics. The routine use of echocardiography and creatinine kinase (CK) assays in the assessment of isolated sternal fractures is not indicated. The introduction of these guidelines has resulted in a dramatic reduction in the number of patients admitted with isolated sternal fractures to our unit. (+info)