Chronic amiodarone therapy impairs the function of the superior sinoatrial node in patients with atrial fibrillation

Hee Sun Mun, Changyu Shen, Hui Nam Pak, Moon Hyoung Lee, Shien Fong Lin, Peng Sheng Chen, Boyoung Joung

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Background: The mechanisms underlying amiodarone-induced sinoatrial node (SAN) dysfunction remain unclear, so we used 3-dimensional endocardial mapping of the right atrium (RA) to investigate. Methods and Results: In a matched-cohort design, 18 patients taking amiodarone before atrial fibrillation (AF) ablation (amiodarone group) were matched for age, sex and type of AF with 18 patients who had undergone AF ablation without taking amiodarone (no-amiodarone group). The amiodarone group had a slower heart rate than the no-amiodarone group at baseline and during isoproterenol infusion. Only the amiodarone group had sick sinus syndrome (n=4, 22%, P=0.03) and abnormal (>550 ms) corrected SAN recovery time (n=5, 29%; P=0.02). The median distance from the junction of the superior vena cava (SVC) and RA to the most cranial earliest activation site (EAS) was longer in the amiodarone group than in the no-amiodarone group at baseline (20.5 vs. 10.6 mm, P=0.04) and during isopro-terenol infusion (12.8 vs. 6.3 mm, P=0.03). The distance from the SVC-RA junction to the EAS negatively correlated with the P-wave amplitudes of leads II (r=-0.47), III (r=-0.60) and aVF (r=-0.56) (P<0.001 for all). Conclusions: In a quarter of the AF patients, amiodarone causes superior SAN dysfunction, which results in a downward shift of the EAS and reduced P-wave amplitude in leads II, III and aVF at baseline and during isoproter-enol infusion.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2255-2263
Number of pages9
JournalCirculation Journal
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 2013

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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