Radiofrequency ablation of atrioventricular nodal reentry tachycardia: A 14 year experience with 901 patients at Tel Aviv Sourasky Medical Center

Ian Topilski, Ori Rogowski, Aharon Glick, Sami Viskin, Michael Eldar, Bernard Belhassen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Background: Atrioventricular nodal reentry tachycardia is the most frequent cause of regular, paroxysmal supraventricular tachycardia. Radiofrequency ablation of the slow pathway has been recommended as first-line therapy for curing AVNRT. Objectives: To report a 14 year experience of RFA of the slow pathway in patients with AVNRT treated in our laboratory. Methods: A total of 901 consecutive patients (aged 9-92, mean 50.8 ± 18.2 years) underwent RFA of the slow pathway. All patients had sustained AVNRT induced with or without intravenous administration of isoproterenol. A standard electrophysiologic method with three diagnostic and one ablation catheter was used in 317 patients (35.2%); in the remaining 584 patients (64.8%), only two electrode catheters (one diagnostic, one ablation) were used ("two-catheter approach"). Results: Catheter ablation of the slow pathway abolished AVNRT induction in 877 patients (97.3%). In 14 patients (1.6%) the procedure was discontinued while in 10 (1.1%) the procedure failed. In 864 patients (95.9%) there were no complications. Transient or permanent AV block occurred during the procedure in 31 patients (3.4%), of whom 8 (0.9%) eventually required pacemaker insertion (n=7) or upgrade of a previously implanted VVI pacemaker (n=1) during the month following the procedure. The number of catheters used did not significantly affect the rate of results or complications of the ablation procedure. The success and complication rates remained stable over the years, although a significant trend for increased age and associated heart disease was observed during the study period. Conclusions: The results of this single-center large study, which included patients with a wide age range, showed results similar to those of previous studies. The use of a "two-catheter approach" (one diagnostic and one ablation) was as effective and safe as a multi-catheter approach.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)455-459
Number of pages5
JournalIsrael Medical Association Journal
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2006


  • Atrioventricular nodal reentry tachycardia
  • Radiofrequency ablation


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