Signal-averaged intracardiac electrograms: A new method to detect Kent potentials

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Signal Averaged Intracardiac Electrograms. Introduction: In patients with manifest accessory pathways, Kent potentials are often difficult to identify even at sites of successful catheter ablation, due largely to signal noise and catheter instability. We hypothesized that signal averaging the intracardiac electrogram recorded from the ablation catheter over a number of beats would improve the signal-to-noise ratio of the electrogram and aid in the detection of Kent potentials at accessory pathway locations. Methods and Results: We retrospectively analyzed distal-pair electrograms recorded from 9 successful, 6 transiently successful, and 10 failed ablation sites in 10 patients with manifest accessory pathways who underwent catheter ablation. We developed custom software to finely align 20 to 30 consecutive sinus beats and compote the signal average of the electrogram (SAE) for each site. Kent potentials were classified as probable, possible, or absent in the raw ablation site electrogram and the SAE base on morphologic criteria. A measure of beat-to-beat signal instability, the variability quotient (VQ), was also computed for each site. Probable Kent potentials were found in the raw ablation site electrogram at only 2 of the 15 successful and transiently successful sites, but were found in the SAE at 10 of these sites (P = 0.008). Eight of the 9 successful sites had VQ < 0.2, suggesting stable catheter- tissue contact, while 3 of the 6 transiently successful sites had VQ > 0.2, indicating unstable contact. Conclusions: Signal averaging the intracardiac ablation site electrogram enhances detection of Kent potentials at accessory pathway locations. Catheter instability can be quantified by signal variability analysis and, when high, may predict lack of successful ablation even at sites where Kent potentials are present.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)155-160
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of cardiovascular electrophysiology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1 1997


  • Kent potential
  • catheter ablation
  • electrogram
  • signal average

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)

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