Clinical predictors of cardiac magnetic resonance late gadolinium enhancement in patients with atrial fibrillation

Jonathan Chrispin, Esra Gucuk Ipek, Mohammadali Habibi, Eunice Yang, David Spragg, Joseph E. Marine, Hiroshi Ashikaga, John Rickard, Ronald D. Berger, Stefan L. Zimmerman, Hugh Calkins, Saman Nazarian

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Aims: This study aims to examine the association of clinical co-morbidities with the presence of left atrial (LA) late gadolinium enhancement (LGE) on cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR). Previous studies have established the severity of LA LGE to be associated with atrial fibrillation (AF) recurrence following AF ablation. We sought to determine whether baseline clinical characteristics were associated with LGE extent among patients presenting for an initial AF ablation. Methods and results: The cohort consisted of 179 consecutive patients with no prior cardiac ablation procedures who underwent pre-procedure LGE-CMR. The extent of LA LGE for each patient was calculated using the image intensity ratio, normalized to the mean blood pool intensity, corresponding to a bipolar voltage ≤0.3 mV. The association of LGE extent with baseline clinical characteristics was examined using non-parametric and multivariable models. The mean age of the cohort was 60.9±9.6 years and 128 (72%) were male. In total, 56 (31%) patients had persistent AF. The mean LA volume was 118.4±41.6 mL, and the mean LA LGE extent was 14.1±10.4%. There was no association with any clinical variables with LGE extent by quartiles in the multivariable model. Extent of LGE as a continuous variable was positively, but weakly associated with LA volume in a multivariable model adjusting for age, body mass index, AF persistence, and left ventricular ejection fraction (1.5% scar/mL, P = 0.038). Conclusion: In a cohort of patients presenting for initial AF ablation, the presence of pre-ablation LA LGE extent was weakly, but positively associated with increasing LA volume.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)371-377
Number of pages7
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2017


  • Ablation
  • Atrial fibrillation
  • Cardiac magnetic resonance imaging
  • Delayed enhancement magnetic resonance
  • Fibrosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)


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