Effects of slow pathway ablation on fast pathway function in patients with atrioventricular nodal reentrant tachycardia

Win Kuang Shen, Thomas M. Munger, Marshall S. Stanton, Michael J. Osborn, Stephen C. Hammill, Douglas L. Packer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Introduction: This study investigated whether fast pathway conduction properties are altered by slow pathway ablation in patients with AV nodal reentrant tachycardia. Methods and Results: Forty consecutive patients who underwent successful ablation of the slow pathway were prospective subjects for the study. Isoproterenol was used to enhance conduction and to differentiate interactive mechanisms. Potential electrotonic interactions were assessed by comparing patients with and those without residual dual AV node physiology after slow pathway ablation. Paired and unpaired t-tests were used when appropriate. P < 0.05 was considered statistically significant. In the entire study population, heart rates were not significantly different before and after slow pathway ablation (RR = 770 ± 114 msec before and 745 ± 99 msec after, P = 0.07). Anterograde fast pathway conduction properties were unchanged after slow pathway ablation (effective refractory period, 348 ± 84 msec before and 336 ± 86 msec after, P = 0.13; shortest 1:1 conduction, 410 ± 93 msec before and 400 ± 82 msec after, P = 0.39). Retrograde fast pathway characteristics also were similar before and after ablation. Neither anterograde nor retrograde fast pathway conduction properties during isoproterenol infusion were changed by slow pathway ablation. When the study population was further divided into patients with (n = 13) or without (n = 27) residual dual AV node physiology, no significant change was detected in fast pathway function in either group after slow pathway ablation. Conclusions: Fast pathway conduction characteristics were not affected by slow pathway ablation. In patients with AV nodal reentrant tachycardia, observations suggest that fast and slow pathways are functionally distinct.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)627-638
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of cardiovascular electrophysiology
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1997


  • Atrioventricular node
  • Autonomic tone
  • Heart
  • Physiology
  • Tachycardia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)


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