Effects of Propofol or Isoflurane Anesthesia on Cardiac Conduction in Children Undergoing Radiofrequency Catheter Ablation for Tachydysrhythmias

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To determine suitability for ablation procedures in children, two commonly used anesthetic agents were studied: propofol and isoflurane.


Twenty patients presenting for a radiofrequency catheter ablation procedure were included and randomly assigned to two groups. A baseline electrophysiology study was performed during anesthesia with thiopental, alfentanil, nitrous oxide, and pancuronium in all patients. At the completion of the baseline electrophysiology study (EPS), 0.8-1.2% isoflurane was administered to patients in group 1 and 2 mg/kg propofol bolus plus an infusion of 150 micro gram *symbol* kg sup -1 *symbol* min sup -1 was administered to patients in group 2. Nitrous oxide and pancuronium were used throughout the procedure. After 30 min of equilibration, both groups underwent a repeat EPS. The following parameters were measured during the EPS: cycle length, atrial-His interval, His-ventricle interval, corrected sinus node recovery time, AV node effective refractory period, and atrial effective refractory period. Using paired t tests, the electrophysiologic parameters described above measured during propofol or isoflurane anesthesia were compared to those measured during baseline anesthesia. Statistical significance was accepted as P < 0.05.


There was no statistically significant difference in the results obtained during baseline anesthesia when compared with those measured during propofol or isoflurane anesthesia.


Neither propofol nor isoflurane anesthesia alter sinoatrial or atrioventricular node function in pediatric patients undergoing radiofrequency catheter ablation, compared to values obtained during baseline anesthesia with alfentanil and midazolam.

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