Characterization of unipolar electrogram morphology: a novel tool for quantifying conduction inhomogeneity

Ziliang Ye, Mathijs S. van Schie, Lisa Pool, Annejet Heida, Paul Knops, Yannick J.H.J. Taverne, Bianca J.J.M. Brundel, Natasja M.S. de Groot*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Abstract

AIMS: 

Areas of conduction inhomogeneity (CI) during sinus rhythm may facilitate the initiation and perpetuation of atrial fibrillation (AF). Currently, no tool is available to quantify the severity of CI. Our aim is to develop and validate a novel tool using unipolar electrograms (EGMs) only to quantify the severity of CI in the atria. 

METHODS AND RESULTS: 

Epicardial mapping of the right atrium (RA) and left atrium, including Bachmann's bundle, was performed in 235 patients undergoing coronary artery bypass grafting surgery. Conduction inhomogeneity was defined as the amount of conduction block. Electrograms were classified as single, short, long double (LDP), and fractionated potentials (FPs), and the fractionation duration of non-single potentials was measured. The proportion of low-voltage areas (LVAs, <1 mV) was calculated. Increased CI was associated with decreased potential voltages and increased LVAs, LDPs, and FPs. The Electrical Fingerprint Score consisting of RA EGM features, including LVAs and LDPs, was most accurate in predicting CI severity. The RA Electrical Fingerprint Score demonstrated the highest correlation with the amount of CI in both atria (r = 0.70, P < 0.001). 

CONCLUSION: 

The Electrical Fingerprint Score is a novel tool to quantify the severity of CI using only unipolar EGM characteristics recorded. This tool can be used to stage the degree of conduction abnormalities without constructing spatial activation patterns, potentially enabling early identification of patients at high risk of post-operative AF or selection of the appropriate ablation approach in addition to pulmonary vein isolation at the electrophysiology laboratory.

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 The Author(s). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Society of Cardiology.

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