A Study of the Effectiveness of Anti-Arrhythmic Medications After Atrial Fibrillation Ablation
The purpose of this study is to examine the overall effectiveness of anti-arrhythmic medicines (to control heart rhythm) prescribed after an ablation procedure for atrial fibrillation.
Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common heart rhythm disorder in the US and it is associated with shortness of breath, palpitations, stroke occurrence and increased mortality. Traditional treatment for AF includes anticoagulation, drugs that slow the heart rate and antiarrhythmic agents. More recently, catheter based treatments to address atrial fibrillation have been developed, which involves using radiofrequency energy to isolate the arrhythmogenic foci localized in the pulmonary veins.
During the first weeks following pulmonary vein isolation (PVI), it is not unusual for patients to experience early recurrences of atrial fibrillation or atrial tachycardia due to irritability from the ablation. While these arrhythmias tend to resolve over time, it is nevertheless standard practice to prescribe antiarrhythmic drugs for the first 2-3 months after the intervention to prevent these early recurrences. However, the efficacy of this practice has never been formally evaluated. In addition, we have identified a small group of patients whose atrial tachycardias have terminated after cessation of antiarrhythmic therapy, suggesting that proarrhythmia from these agents may promote reentrant tachycardias in some patients. We therefore designed a study protocol that will evaluate the usefulness of short term antiarrhythmic drug therapy in order to prevent atrial fibrillation and atrial tachycardia episodes during the first 6 weeks following PVI.
The target population of the study includes all patients with paroxysmal atrial fibrillation referred for PVI. After the ablation procedure, patients will be randomized to receive or not receive antiarrhythmic drugs for a period of 6 weeks. Arrhythmia occurrence during this period will be monitored via twice daily transtelephonic monitoring. Clinical visits including a physical exam and 12 lead ECG recording will be scheduled at 6 weeks. The primary endpoint of the study will be a composite endpoint including 1) atrial arrhythmias persisting > 24 hours or requiring initiation of antiarrhythmic therapy 2) need for cardioversion/hospital admission 3) need for repeat ablation or 4) adverse outcome/intolerance of antiarrhythmic agent requiring drug cessation or change during the 6 week follow up period.
Allocation: Randomized, Endpoint Classification: Efficacy Study, Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment, Masking: Open Label, Primary Purpose: Treatment
propafenone; flecainide; sotalol; dofetilide, Radiofrequency catheter ablation
Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania
University of Pennsylvania
Results (where available)
- Source: http://clinicaltrials.gov/show/NCT00408200
- Information obtained from ClinicalTrials.gov on July 11, 2012
Medical and Biotech [MESH] Definitions
A potent anti-arrhythmia agent, effective in a wide range of ventricular and atrial arrhythmias and tachycardias. Paradoxically, however, in myocardial infarct patients with either symptomatic or asymptomatic arrhythmia, flecainide exacerbates the arrhythmia and is not recommended for use in these patients.
Removal of tissue with electrical current delivered via electrodes positioned at the distal end of a catheter. Energy sources are commonly direct current (DC-shock) or alternating current at radiofrequencies (usually 750 kHz). The technique is used most often to ablate the AV junction and/or accessory pathways in order to interrupt AV conduction and produce AV block in the treatment of various tachyarrhythmias.
Placement of a balloon-tipped catheter into the pulmonary artery through the antecubital, subclavian, and sometimes the femoral vein. It is used to measure pulmonary artery pressure and pulmonary artery wedge pressure which reflects left atrial pressure and left ventricular end-diastolic pressure. The catheter is threaded into the right atrium, the balloon is inflated and the catheter follows the blood flow through the tricuspid valve into the right ventricle and out into the pulmonary artery.
Rapid, irregular atrial contractions caused by a block of electrical impulse conduction in the right atrium and a reentrant wave front traveling up the inter-atrial septum and down the right atrial free wall or vice versa. Unlike ATRIAL FIBRILLATION which is caused by abnormal impulse generation, typical atrial flutter is caused by abnormal impulse conduction. As in atrial fibrillation, patients with atrial flutter cannot effectively pump blood into the lower chambers of the heart (HEART VENTRICLES).
Removal of tissue by vaporization, abrasion, or destruction. Methods used include heating tissue by hot liquids or microwave thermal heating, freezing (CRYOABLATION), chemical ablation, and photoablation with LASERS.
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Kv2.1 channels, which are expressed in brain, heart, pancreas, and other organs and tissues, are important targets for drug design. Flecainide and propafenone are known to block Kv2.1 channels more po...
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