Prognosis of high sinus heart rate after catheter ablation for atrial fibrillation

Hee Tae Yu, Tae Hoon Kim, Jae Sun Uhm, Jong Youn Kim, Boyoung Joung, Moon Hyoung Lee, Hui Nam Pak

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)


Aims Although atrial fibrillation (AF) catheter ablation increases sinus heart rate (HR), its mechanism and prognosis have not yet been clearly elucidated. We hypothesize that post-AF ablation high sinus HR (PA-HSR) is associated with a better clinical outcome of AF ablation without adverse cardiac effects. Methods and results We studied 991 AF patients (75% male, 58 ± 11 years old, 70% paroxysmal AF) with HR variability (HRV) at 3 months and 1 year after catheter ablation, and pre- and post-1-year echocardiograms. Post-AF ablation high sinus HR was defined as an average HR greater than 2 SD (≥92 bpm) as measured by 24 h Holter. (1) Average HR increased significantly (P< 0.001), and PA-HSR was observed in 28 patients (2.8%) 3 months after AF ablation. At 1 year after catheter ablation, 21% were taking β-blockers and 36% maintained an average HR of ≥92 bpm. (2) Post-AF ablation high sinus HR was independently associated with pre-procedural high average HR (OR 1.097; 95% CI 1.029-1.169, P= 0.005), high left atrium (LA) electrogram voltage (OR 3.545; 95% CI 1.183-10.618, P= 0.024), and reduced root mean square of differences between successive NN intervals (rMSSD) at 3 months HRV (OR 0.959; 95% CI 0.919-0.999, P= 0.047). (3) At 1 year echocardiography, size reduction of LA (P= 0.055) or LV (P= 0.372) and the improvement in ejection fraction (P= 0.529) were not significantly different between patients with PA-HSR and those without. (4) Throughout 27 ± 17 months of follow-up, patients with PA-HSR showed significantly lower clinical recurrence than those without (log rank, P= 0.020). Conclusion Post-AF ablation high sinus HR was observed in patients with smaller LA size and higher LA electrogram voltage and significant vagal modulation without adverse cardiac effects. Post-AF ablation high sinus HR was associated with a significantly lower clinical recurrence of AF after catheter ablation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1132-1139
Number of pages8
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Jul 1

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 The Author.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)


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