Left Atrial Appendage Volume and Plasma Docosahexaenoic Acid Levels Are Associated With Atrial Fibrillation Recurrence After Catheter Ablation.

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Risk factors for atrial fibrillation (AF) recurrence in patients who have undergone AF catheter ablation have not been fully clarified. The objective of this study was to assess whether the left atrium (LA) and LA appendage (LAA) volumes, and cardio-metabolic markers such as polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) levels were associated with AF recurrence.


Seventy-seven consecutive patients with AF (mean age, 59 ± 8 years; male, 81%; paroxysmal AF, 64%) undergoing catheter ablation were enrolled. Using contrast-enhanced cardiac multi-detector computed tomography (MDCT) scan, the LA and LAA volume and orifice area were assessed. Radiofrequency ablation was performed by an irrigation catheter, initially targeting the pulmonary veins with a wide area circumferential ablation.


Patients with AF recurrence (36%) exhibited both larger LAA volumes and an LAA orifice area than those without AF recurrence, whereas the LA diameter and LA volumes were not significantly different. Notably, AF recurrence occurred in all patients with a large LAA (≥ 25 mL), and the LAA volume was significantly and negatively associated with docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) levels (β = -0.33, P = 0.003). A multiple regression analysis revealed that the log N-terminal proB-type natriuretic peptide and plasma DHA levels were independent factors for the LAA volume when adjusted for age, AF detected age, left ventricular (LV) ejection fraction, end-systolic LV diameter.


These results suggest that the association between LAA volume and low plasma DHA levels may be an important factor for post-ablation AF recurrence.

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