A radiofrequency energy lesion transmurality marker incorporating power, contact force, and time (Ablation Index, AI) was shown to be associated with outcomes of catheter ablation (CA) of multiple arrhythmias, but was never systematically assessed in the CA of focal atrial tachycardias (AT). We aimed to evaluate the role of AI as a predictor of outcomes in focal AT CA, and therefore, retrospectively included 45 consecutive patients undergoing CA for focal AT in four referral electrophysiology laboratories. Clinical and procedural information were collected. For each patient, maximum and mean (by averaging maximum AI values for each radiofrequency ablation lesion) AI were measured. The primary outcome was focal AT-free survival, and was systematically assessed with periodical Holter monitors or cardiac implantable electronic devices. CA was acutely effective in each case; however, 20% (n = 9) of the study population experienced a focal AT recurrence over a median follow-up of 288 days. Both maximum and mean AI values were significantly higher among patients without AT recurrences (maximum AI = 568 ± 91, mean AI = 426 ± 105) than in patients with AT relapses (maximum AI = 447 ± 142, mean AI = 352 ± 76, p = 0.036, and p = 0.028, respectively). The optimal cutoffs associated with freedom from recurrences were 461 for maximum AI (sensitivity, 0.89; specificity, 0.56) and 301 for mean AI (sensitivity, 0.97; specificity, 0.44). In a time-to-event analysis, maximum AI was significantly associated with survival free from AT recurrence (p = 0.001), whereas mean AI was not (p = 0.08). In summary, maximum AI is the best procedural parameter associated with the outcomes of CA for focal AT, and may help standardize the procedural approach.
Reference: Ablation Index Predicts Successful Ablation of Focal Atrial Tachycardia: Results of a Multicenter Study. Compagnucci P, Dello Russo A, Bergonti M, Anselmino M, Zucchelli G, Gasperetti A, Cipolletta L, Volpato G, Ascione C, Ferraris F, Valeri Y, Bongiorni MG, Natale A, Tondo C, De Ferrari GM, Casella M. J Clin Med. 2022 Mar 24;11(7):1802.