SUMMARY This study describes a new method (NM) for estimation of sinoatrial conduction time (SACT), which utilizes constant atrial pacing (AP) instead of the premature atrial beats (PABs) used in the method reported in 1973 by Strauss et al. The SACTs were obtained by both methods in 20 patients. The SACT by the Strauss method (SM) was calculated as A2A3 minus A1A,. The NM consists of high right AP for a train of eight consecutive beats at rates:510 beats/min faster than the sinus rhythm. The interval between the last paced atrial electrogram (Ap) and the first escape atrial electrogram (A) of sinus origin (Ap-A) was measured along with several post pacing sinus cycles. The SACT by the NM was calculated as follows: SACT = Ap-A minus A,A,. The effect of AP at higher rates was also analyzed. In two patients, the SACT with the SM could not be defined, as all the A2A, intervals were fully compensatory; with the NM the SACT was 217 and 320 msec. In the remaining 18 patients the SACT was obtainable by both methods. With SM, the SACT ranged 105-452 msec (mean 219 ± 102 SD) and with the NM it was 85-492 msec (mean 201 ± 112 SD), and the difference was statistically significant (P = 0.0162). The coefficient of correlation between the two methods was r = 0.97. During AP at faster rates, a rate related increment in Ap-A intervals and also post pacing sinus cycles was noted.
This study describes a new and simple method for measurement of SACT in man.