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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Epicardial neodymium. YAG laser photocoagulation of ventricular tachycardia without ventriculotomy in patients after myocardial infarction.

BACKGROUND: Surgical ablation of ventricular tachycardia (VT) after myocardial infarction has been reported by different endocardial approaches. The ventriculotomy may increase mortality of the procedure. METHODS AND RESULTS: We report on nine patients who suffered from recurrent VT in the late post-myocardial infarction period. Significant stenoses were detected in all patients. The mean left ventricular ejection fraction was 43.1 +/- 8.3%. Left ventricular scar (n = 9) was seen. The mean NYHA class was 2.2 +/- 0. 4. Sustained VT (mean cycle length, 293 +/- 52 ms) occurred spontaneously (n = 9) and could be induced reproducibly. Catheter mapping detected a prematurity of -42 +/- 13 ms in six patients. Clinical VT was inducible during surgery in seven patients. Middiastolic potentials were detected from the epicardial surface (n = 3), and premature potentials were found (n = 8 with prematurity of -108 +/- 46 ms). Application of neodymium/yttrium/argon/ garnet (Nd:YAG) laser energy to early epicardial activation terminated the arrhythmia (n = 7). Ventriculotomy was not performed. Seven patients have been free of VT for a mean follow-up period of 17 +/- 11 months; one patient relapsed and was treated with an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator, as was a second patient with inducible VT after surgery. CONCLUSIONS: Surgical Nd:YAG laser photocoagulation of VT on the epicardial surface of the heart in post-myocardial infarction patients without ventriculotomy is safe and has a high success rate. At the present time, this method is recommended in patients with sustained and tolerated VT who need bypass surgery. This is the first report on epicardial laser ablation of VT in post-myocardial infarction VT.[1]


  1. Epicardial neodymium. YAG laser photocoagulation of ventricular tachycardia without ventriculotomy in patients after myocardial infarction. Pfeiffer, D., Moosdorf, R., Svenson, R.H., Littmann, L., Grimm, W., Kirchhoff, P.G., Lüderitz, B. Circulation (1996) [Pubmed]
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