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Atrial fibrillation remains the most common arrhythmia in the USA and is associated with an increased risk for stroke, congestive heart failure and overall mortality. There has been a tremendous advance in the field of catheter ablation of atrial fibrillation that has resulted in better outcomes for patients. The approach for ablation of atrial fibrillation can be different depending on patients' presentation of paroxysmal or persistent atrial fibrillation. Pulmonary vein isolation remains the cornerstone of any ablation strategy for atrial fibrillation; however, further ablation, end points of the procedure, clinical end points for successful ablation and appropriate follow-up remain controversial. We aim to discuss these different approaches and the major controversies in catheter ablation of atrial fibrillation.