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Some Surgical Aspects of Atrial Fibrillation. Vincent A. Gaudiani, MD Luis J. Castro, MD Audrey L. Fisher, MPH. The Nature of Surgical Intervention Demands a Simplified Model of What May Be a Complex Problem. Conceptual strip of atrium with normal depolarization.

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some surgical aspects of atrial fibrillation

Some Surgical Aspectsof Atrial Fibrillation

Vincent A. Gaudiani, MD

Luis J. Castro, MD

Audrey L. Fisher, MPH

the nature of surgical intervention demands a simplified model of what may be a complex problem
The Nature of Surgical InterventionDemands a Simplified Model of What May Be a Complex Problem
conceptual strip of atrium with normal depolarization
Conceptual strip of atrium with normal depolarization

Yellow tissue is repolarized and ready to conduct.

Green tissue is depolarized and cannot currently conduct.

Initial impulse

Impulse travels

Impulse completes

circuit while tissue

is still depolarized

Tissue repolarizes –

ready for next impulse

slide4

Each macro-reentrant pathway must have a conduction time sufficiently long to permit initially depolarized muscle to repolarize before the depolarizing wavefront returns. This will depend on the:

  • Physical length of the pathway
  • Conductance of the pathway
macro reentrant pathways

Normal

Abnormally

Long

Abnormally

Slow

Macro-reentrant pathways
macro reentrant pathways1

N

Normal

Long

Slow

N

Long

Normal

Slow

N

Normal

Long

Slow

Macro-reentrant pathways

Initial impulse

Yellow tissue is repolarized and ready to conduct.

Green tissue is depolarized and cannot currently conduct.

Impulse travels: farther in long circuit and at slwoer speed in slow circuit. Both of these circuits allow for tissue to repolarize by the time the impulse completes the circuit.

Circuit complete: normal circuit tissue is still depolarized and unable to conduct again. The time delay in long and slow circuits creates tissue that is repolarized by the time the circuit is complete, and the impulse can be conducted again and again.

slide7

Cox and his colleagues demonstrated that atrial fibrillation may be seen as the result of the interaction of a finite number of macro-reentrant pathwaysANDthat each pathway correlated with an anatomic feature of the atria.

slide8

Cox reasoned that surgical interdiction of each of these pathways would preclude sustained atrial fibrillation.

the likely anatomic pathways are around the right atrium
The likely Anatomic Pathways are around the right atrium:

Right Atrial Appendage

Atrial Septum

Tricuspid Valve

Venae Cavae

the likely anatomic pathways are around the left atrium
The likely Anatomic Pathways are around the left atrium:

Atrial Septum

Left Atrial Appendage

Pulmonary Veins

Mitral Valve

slide11

Surprisingly, other research has shown that atrial fibrillation is frequently initiated within the cuff of tissue comprised by the pulmonary veins and the local atrial tissue around them.- Perhaps 70-80% of atrial fibrillation can be prevented solely by isolating this tissue from the rest of the atrium.

optimum therapy of af demands
Optimum Therapy of AF demands:
  • Ablation of AF
  • Restoration of AV Synchrony
  • Restoration of AV Transport
optimum therapy corrects the clinical problems associated with af

Optimum therapy corrects the clinical problems associated with AF:

Atrial thrombus formation

Decreased cardiac efficiency

Palpitations

Need for anticoagulation

surgical incisions in the right atrium
Surgical incisions in the right atrium
  • Excise right atrial appendage
  • Extend from right atrial appendage totricuspid valve
  • SVC to IVC straight line incision
  • Extend from caval incision to tricuspid
surgical incisions in the left atrium
Surgical incisions in the left atrium

Left atriotomy

Encircle pulmonary veins

(epv)

Excise left atrial appendage

Extend from appendage to epv

Extend from mitral annulus to epv

Cut atrial septum through fossa ovalis

slide16

The Cox/Maze III operation restores AV synchrony and transport in > 70-80% of patients by isolating the pulmonary vein cuff and placing surgical incisions through each of the major macro-reentrant circuits.Every segment of the atria, except the pulmonary vein cuff, remains in electrical contact with the SA node.

maze results i
Maze Results I

From October 1997 through December 2003 we performed 162 Maze operations as follows:

  • Maze Only 11
  • Maze and Mitral Valve Only 74
  • Maze and Any Other 77
maze results ii
Maze Results II

In the entire series of 162 cases, there were three operative mortalities (1.9%). These occurred in high-risk patients. There have not been any deaths in reasonable or low risk patients.

maze results iii
Maze Results III

We follow up with our Maze patients on an annual basis. Our follow up of August 2003 included 133 patients from between three months to over five years out from the time of operation. The percentage of patients in normal rhythm at 2003 follow up was:

  • Maze Only 91% (10/11)
  • Maze and Mitral Valve Only 92% (55/60)
  • Maze and Any Other 89% (55/62)
conclusion
Conclusion

The Cox/Maze procedure is an effective treatment for atrial fibrillation for some patients who require cardiac operations.