The association of pre-existing left atrial fibrosis with clinical variables in patients referred for catheter ablation of atrial fibrillation

Jane Dewire, Irfan M. Khurram, Farhad Pashakhanloo, David Spragg, Joseph E. Marine, Ronald D. Berger, Hiroshi Ashikaga, John Rickard, Stefan L. Zimmerman, Vadim Zipunnikov, Hugh Calkins, Saman Nazarian

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Introduction: Atrial fibrillation (AF) recurrence after ablation is associated with left atrial (LA) fibrosis on late gadolinium enhanced (LGE) magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). We sought to determine pre-ablation, clinical characteristics that associate with the extent of LA fibrosis in patients undergoing catheter ablation for AF.Methods and results: Consecutive patients presenting for catheter ablation of AF were enrolled and underwent LGE-MRI prior to initial AF ablation. The extent of fibrosis as a percentage of total LA myocardium was calculated in all patients prior to ablation. The cohort was divided into quartiles based on the percentage of fibrosis. Of 60 patients enrolled in the cohort, 13 had, 5% fibrosis (Group 1), 15 had 5–7% fibrosis (Group 2), 17 had 8–13% fibrosis (Group 3), and 15 had 14–36% fibrosis (Group 4). The extent of LA fibrosis was positively associated with time in continuous AF, and the presence of persistent or longstanding persistent AF. However, no statistically significant difference was observed in the presence of comorbid conditions, age, BMI, LA volume, or family history of AF among the four groups. After adjusting for diabetes and hypertension in a multivariable linear regression model, paroxysmal AF remained independently and negatively associated with the extent of fibrosis (−4.0 ± 1.8, P = 0.034).Conclusion: The extent of LA fibrosis in patients undergoing AF ablation is associated with AF type and time in continuous AF. Our results suggest that the presence and duration of AF are primary determinants of increased atrial LGE.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)25-30
Number of pages6
JournalClinical Medicine Insights: Cardiology
Volume8
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 19 2014

Keywords

  • Atrial fibrillation
  • Fibrosis
  • MRI

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

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