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Indian Pacing Electrophysiol J. 2012 May;12(3):114-23. Epub 2012 May 20.

Biventricular / left ventricular pacing in hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy: an overview.

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  • 1Cardiology Department, Clinic Emergency Hospital, Bucharest, Romania.


Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is an autosomal dominant inherited genetic disease characterized by compensatory pathological left ventricle (LV) hypertrophy due to sarcomere dysfunction. In an important proportion of patients with HCM, the site and extent of cardiac hypertrophy results in severe obstruction to LV outflow tract (LVOT), contributing to disabling symptoms and increasing the risk of sudden cardiac death (SCD). In patients with progressive and/or refractory symptoms despite optimal pharmacological treatment, invasive therapies that diminish or abolish LVOT obstruction relieve heart failure-related symptoms, improve quality of life and could be associated with long-term survival similar to that observed in the general population. The gold standard in this respect is surgical septal myectomy, which might be supplementary associated with a reduction in SCD. Percutaneous techniques, particularly alcohol septal ablation (ASA) and more recently radiofrequency (RF) septal ablation, can achieve LVOT gradient reduction and symptomatic benefit in a large proportion of HOCM patients at the cost of a supposedly limited septal myocardial necrosis and a 10-20% risk of chronic atrioventricular block. After an initial period of enthusiasm, standard DDD pacing failed to show in randomized trials significant LVOT gradient reductions and objective improvement in exercise capacity. However, case reports and recent small pilot studies suggested that atrial synchronous LV or biventricular (biV) pacing significantly reduce LVOT obstruction and improve symptoms (acutely as well as long-term) in a large proportion of severely symptomatic HOCM patients not suitable to other gradient reduction therapies. Moreover, biV/LV pacing in HOCM seems to be associated with significant LV reverse remodelling.


biventricular pacing; hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy; intraventricular gradient; reverse remodelling

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