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J Cardiovasc Electrophysiol. 2012 Feb;23(2):121-7. doi: 10.1111/j.1540-8167.2011.02165.x. Epub 2011 Sep 13.

Prospective assessment of short- and long-term quality of life after ablation for atrial fibrillation.

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Deutsches Herzzentrum München & 1. Med. Klinik, Technische Universität München, Munich, Germany.



This study prospectively assesses different aspects of short- and long-term quality of life (QoL) after catheter ablation for atrial fibrillation (AF). An analysis of 7 validated generic and tailored questionnaires was performed with regard to the relation of QoL to ablation success.


The study included 133 patients (74% men, age 57±10) who underwent pulmonary vein isolation ± linear or electrogram-guided substrate modification for AF. QoL was quantitatively assessed at baseline, 3 months after ablation and at a median of 4.3 ± 0.5 years after ablation by the AF severity scale (AFSS), AF symptom checklist (AFSC), WHO-5-Well-Being-Index (WHO), Major Depression Inventory (MDI), Sleep and Vegetative disorder (SV), Vital Exhaustion (VE), and Illness intrusiveness (Ii).


QoL was improved significantly 3 months after ablation in all patients (regardless of ablation success or AF type) and stayed significantly improved after a median of 4.3±0.5 years (AFSS, AFSC, WHO, MDI, VE, PE (all P < 0.001), and SV (P = 0.007)). Patients who had a successful ablation improved significantly more than patients with an unsuccessful ablation in the AFSS, AFSC, and MDI questionnaire (delta change from baseline to long-term follow-up P = <0.001, P = <0.001, and P = 0.039, respectively).


Overall, all patients significantly improved their QoL irrespective of the AF type in all questionnaires 3 months and 4 years after ablation. The increase in QoL was significantly greater in patients who underwent a successful ablation than patients with unsuccessful ablation in the AFSS, AFSC, and MDI questionnaire.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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