Fusion of imaging technologies: how, when, and for whom?

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Over the past decade, electroanatomic mapping has emerged as a useful tool for complex ablation procedures. A more recent advancement is the development of image integration. Image integration refers to the process of registering a previously acquired MRI or CT scan of the heart with the mapping space during the ablation procedure. The technique of image integration is now relied on by many electrophysiology laboratories to guide complex ablation procedures, particularly atrial fibrillation ablation and ablation of patients with ventricular tachycardia in the setting of structural heart disease. An even more recent development is image fusion. This refers to taking information about the myocardial substrate, especially intramyocardial scar, and registering it with the active mapping space. This technique remains in its infancy but shows great promise in facilitating complex ablation procedures. The purpose of the article is to review the development, state of the art, and future of these image integration and fusion techniques.

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