Brugada syndrome (BrS) is an autosomal dominant channelopathy which is responsible for a large number of sudden cardiac deaths in young subjects without structural abnormalities. The most challenging step in management of patients with BrS is identifying who is at risk for developing malignant ventricular tachyarrhythmia (VTA). In patients with BrS, conduction delay in the right ventricular outflow tract (RVOT) causes a prominent R wave in lead aVR. This electrocardiographic parameter can be useful to detect these high-risk patients. The goal of this study was to test the significance of R-wave elevation in lead aVR as a predictor for VTA in patients with BrS. In this retrospective study, we included 132 patients with BrS (47 ± 15 years, 65% men) who visited the outpatient clinic for cardiogenetic screening. Patients' medical records were examined for the presence of a positive R-wave sign in lead aVR and VTA. A positive R-wave sign in lead aVR was observed in 41 patients (31%). This sign was more frequently observed in patients who experienced VTA (n = 24) before the initial diagnosis, during electrophysiological studies, or during follow-up (p <0.001). The positive R-wave sign occurred more frequently in symptomatic patients with a history of an out of hospital cardiac arrest, VTA, or syncope than asymptomatic patients (60% vs 26%; p = 0.002). During the follow-up period, this sign was more frequently detected in patients who developed either de novo (50%) or recurrent VTA (80%) (p = 0.017). Multivariable regression analysis showed that R-wave sign is an independent predictor for VTA development (odds ratio 4.8, 95% confidence interval 1.79 to 13.27). The presence of a positive R-wave sign in lead aVR is associated with the development of VTA. In conclusion, positive R-wave sign in lead aVR can be used to identify patients with BrS at risk for malignant VTA.

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Journal The American Journal of Cardiology
Ragab, A.A.Y. (Ahmed A.Y.), Houck, C, van der Does, L, Lanters, E, Burghouwt, D.E, Muskens, A.J.Q.M, & de Groot, N.M.S. (2017). Usefulness of the R-Wave Sign as a Predictor for Ventricular Tachyarrhythmia in Patients With Brugada Syndrome. The American Journal of Cardiology, 120(3), 428–434. doi:10.1016/j.amjcard.2017.04.044