Mapping and Ablating Ventricular Premature Contractions That Trigger Ventricular Fibrillation: Trigger Elimination and Substrate Modification

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VF Ablation:

Ventricular fibrillation (VF) is a malignant arrhythmia, usually initiated by a ventricular premature contraction (VPC) during the vulnerable period of cardiac repolarization. Ablation therapy for VF has been described and increasingly reported. Targets for VF triggers are VPC preceded Purkinje potentials or the right ventricular outflow tract (RVOT) in structurally normal hearts, and VPC triggers preceded by Purkinje potentials in ischemic cardiomyopathy. The most important issue before the ablation session is the recording of the 12-lead electrocardiogram (ECG) of the triggering event, which can prove invaluable in regionalizing the origin of the triggering VPC for more detailed mapping. In cases where the VPC is not spontaneous or inducible, ablation may be performed by pacemapping. During the session, mapping should be focused on the earliest activation and determining the earliest potential is the key to a successful ablation. However, a modification of the Purkinje network might be applied when the earliest site cannot be determined or is located close to the His-bundle. Furthermore, the electrical isolation of the pulmonary artery (PA) can suppress RVOT type polymorphic ventricular tachycardia in some patients with rapid triggers from the PA. Suppression of VF can be achieved by not only the elimination of triggering VPCs, but also by substrate modification of possible reentry circuits in the Purkinje network, or between the PA and RVOT. Further studies are needed to evaluate the precise mechanisms of this arrhythmia.

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