Indexed on: 21 Jan '15Published on: 21 Jan '15Published in: Europace : European pacing, arrhythmias, and cardiac electrophysiology : journal of the working groups on cardiac pacing, arrhythmias, and cardiac cellular electrophysiology of the European Society of Cardiology
Transcatheter pulmonary vein ablation is the current treatment of choice for symptomatic drug-refractory atrial fibrillation (AF). Video-assisted surgical pulmonary vein isolation (sPVI) is an alternative therapy to percutaneous ablation for the treatment of AF. Long-term results of sPVI are currently unknown. The aim of this study was to report on the long-term efficacy and safety of sPVI in patients with paroxysmal AF.The study design was observational and retrospective. From July 2005 to January 2011, 42 patients with drug-refractory paroxysmal AF underwent video-assisted sPVI in two different centres. Patients were eligible for sPVI when suffering from symptomatic, drug-refractory paroxysmal AF and they agreed to the alternative of sPVI. The median preoperative AF duration was 24 months (range 3-200). Success was defined as the absence of AF on 24 h or 96 h Holter monitoring during follow-up, off antiarrhythmic drugs (AAD). Adverse events and follow-up monitoring were based on the Heart Rhythm Society Consensus Statement 2012 for the catheter and surgical ablation of AF. Mean age was 55 ± 10 years, and 76% were males. After a mean follow-up of 5 years (SD 1.7), 69% of all patients were free from atrial arrhythmias without the use of AAD, and 83% with the use of AAD. Major peri-procedural adverse events occurred in four (9.5%) patients, no strokes or mortalities were registered during long-term follow-up.This retrospective study shows that sPVI for the treatment of paroxysmal AF is effective and that the outcomes are maintained at long-term follow-up.