Aims: Early atrial arrhythmia following atrial fibrillation (AF) ablation is associated with higher recurrence rates. Few studies explore the impact of early AF (EAF) and atrial tachycardia (EAT) on long-term outcomes. Furthermore, EAF/EAT have not been characterized after wide pulmonary vein isolation. We aimed to characterize EAF and EAT and its impact on late AF (LAF) and AT (LAT) after single ring isolation (SRI).
Methods and results: We recruited 119 (females 21, age 58 ± 10 years) consecutive patients with AF (paroxysmal 76, persistent 43) undergoing SRI. Early atrial fibrillation/ early atrial tachycardia was defined as AF/AT within 3 months post-procedure (blanking period). Patients were followed for median 2.8[2.2-4] years. Early atrial fibrillation occurred in 28% (n = 33) and EAT in 25% (n = 30). At follow-up, 25% (n = 30) had LAF and 28% (n = 33) had LAT. Patients with EAF and EAT had higher rates of LAF (48 vs. 16%, P<0.0001) and LAT (60 vs. 16%, P < 0.0001), respectively. Independent predictors of LAF were EAF (3.53(1.72-7.29) P = 0.001); and of LAT were EAT (5.62(2.88-10.95) P < 0.0001) and procedure time (1.38/ h(1.07-1.78) P = 0.04). Importantly, EAF did not predict LAT and EAT did not predict LAF. Early atrial fibrillation late in the blanking period was associated with higher rates of LAF (73% for month 3 vs. 25% for Months 1-2, P = 0.004). However, EAT timing did not predict LAT.
Conclusion: Early atrial fibrillation and EAT are predictive of LAF and LAT, respectively. Early atrial fibrillation late in the blanking period has greater predictive significance for LAF. This timing is not relevant for LAT. Early arrhythmia type and timing have important prognostic significance following SRI.
Clinical Trial Registration: http://www.anzctr.org.au;ACTRN12606000467538.
- Atrial fibrillation
- Early recurrence of atrial fibrillation
- Early recurrence of atrial tachycardia
- Blanking period
- Pulmonary vein isolation
- Catheter ablation