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Circ J. 2012;76(4):852-9. Epub 2012 Jan 21.

Epicardial atrial mapping can predict elimination of chronic atrial fibrillation after the box pulmonary vein isolation during mitral valve surgery.

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  • 1Department of Cardiovascular Surgery, Hiroshima University School of Medicine, Hiroshima 734-8551, Japan.



The pulmonary veins (PV) and posterior left atrium (LA) may contribute to the occurrence and maintenance of atrial fibrillation (AF). We evaluated whether simple epicardial electrophysiological mapping can predict elimination of chronic AF after the box PV isolation procedure.


Using a computerized 48-channel mapping system, we performed intraoperative atrial mapping in 16 patients with chronic AF associated with mitral valve (MV) disease. Patients' ages ranged from 48 to 76 years (mean, 61.4 years). AF duration ranged from 1 to 16 years (mean, 7.5±5.4 years). Simple box PV isolation was performed during the MV operation. Regular and repetitive activation was found in the LA of 12 of 16 patients, and irregular and chaotic activation was found in both atria in 4 of 16 patients; 12 patients with regular and repetitive activation of the LA were treated by box PV isolation and the other 4 patients with irregular and chaotic activation in both atria did not recover sinus rhythm after this procedure. AF-free rate was significantly higher in patients with regular and repetitive activation of the LA (P<0.01).


Box PV isolation was effective in the treatment of chronic AF associated with MV disease. Epicardial atrial mapping may predict elimination of AF after the box PV isolation.

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