Increasing Lesion Dimensions of Bipolar Ablation by Modulating the Surface Area of the Return Electrode

Arwa Younis, Hagai D. Yavin, Koji Higuchi, Israel Zilberman, Jakub Sroubek, Patrick Tchou, Zachary P. Bubar, Michael Barkagan, Eran Leshem, Ayelet Shapira-Daniels, Mohamad Kanj, Daniel J. Cantillon, Ayman A. Hussein, Khaldoun G. Tarakji, Walid I. Saliba, Jacob S. Koruth, Elad Anter*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objectives: This study sought to examine the effect of the return electrode's surface area on bipolar RFA lesion size. Background: Bipolar radiofrequency ablation (RFA) is typically performed between 2 3.5-mm tip catheters serving as active and return electrodes. We hypothesized that increasing the surface area of the return electrode would increase lesion dimensions by reducing the circuit impedance, thus increasing the current into a larger tissue volume enclosed between the electrodes. Methods: In step 1, ex vivo bipolar RFA was performed between 3.5-mm and custom-made return electrodes with increasing surface areas (20, 80, 180 mm2). In step 2, ex vivo bipolar RFA was performed between 3.5-mm and 3.5-mm or 8-mm electrode catheters positioned perpendicular or parallel to the tissue. In step 3, in vivo bipolar RFA was performed between 3.5-mm and either 3.5-mm or 8-mm parallel electrode at the: 1) left ventricular summit; 2) interventricular septum; and 3) healed anterior infarction. Results: In step 1, increasing the surface area of the return electrode resulted in lower circuit impedance (R = −0.65; P < 0.001), higher current (R = +0.80; P < 0.001), and larger lesion volume (R = +0.88; P < 0.001). In step 2, an 8-mm return electrode parallel to tissue produced larger and deeper lesions compared with a 3.5-mm return electrode (P = 0.014 and P = 0.02). Similarly, in step 3, compared with a 3.5-mm, bipolar RFA with an 8-mm return electrode produced larger (volume: 1,525 ± 871 mm3 vs 306 ± 310 mm3, respectively; P < 0.001) and more transmural lesions (88% vs 0%; P < 0.001). Conclusions: Bipolar RFA using an 8-mm return electrode positioned parallel to the tissue produces larger lesions in comparison with a 3.5-mm return electrode.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)498-510
Number of pages13
JournalJACC: Clinical Electrophysiology
Volume8
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2022
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • bipolar ablation
  • catheter ablation
  • electrophysiology
  • radiofrequency

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