Electrical remodeling of atrial fibrillation may account for the increase in atrial defibrillation thresholds over time. The aim of this study was to examine the time course of electrical remodeling and the benefit of early defibrillation on the defibrillation threshold. Twenty-six mongrel dogs weighing 27.6 ± 3.3 kg were induced into AF by repeated high output burst atrial pacing. Eight dogs were paced for multiple time periods of 5, 20, 40, and 60 minutes. Five dogs each had burst pacing for 4 hours and 8 hours, and eight dogs were paced at a high rate (640 beats/min) for 48 hours. Biphasic atrial defibrillation shocks with a pulse width of 3/3 ms synchronized to the left apical electrogram were delivered to coil electrode catheters positioned in the lateral left and right atria. Defibrillation voltage was increased from 50 V in 20- to 30-V steps until defibrillation was successful. As the pacing period increased, a decrease in atrial fibrillation cycle lengths and atrial effective refractory period was not observed before 8 hours. Similarly, the defibrillation threshold did not change significantly until the 8-hour pacing period was reached. The defibrillation thresholds were 69 ± 28 V for 5 minutes, 64 ± 20 V for 20 minutes, 99 ± 85 V for 40 minutes, 78 ± 51 V for 60 minutes, 78 ± 38 V for 4 hours, 124 ± 33 V for 8 hours, and 133 ± 32 V for 48 hours (mean ± SD) (P < 0.05). Atrial electrical remodeling in a rapid atrial pacing canine model is not observed until after 4 hours of burst atrail pacing. The atrial defibrillation threshold increases with increasing duration of burst atrial pacing, and follows a similar time course to other parameters of electrical remodeling.
- Atrial fibrillation
- Atrial implantable defibrillator
- Electrical remodeling
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine