Valvular heart disease (VHD) is a common risk factor for atrial fibrillation (AF). Conduction abnormalities (CA) during sinus rhythm (SR) across Bachmann’s bundle (BB) are associated with AF development. The study goal is to compare electrophysiological characteristics across BB during SR between patients with ischemic (IHD) and/or VHD either with or without ischemic heart disease ((I)VHD), with/without AF history using high-resolution intraoperative epicardial mapping. In total, 304 patients (IHD: n = 193, (I)VHD: n = 111) were mapped; 40 patients (13%) had a history of AF. In 116 patients (38%) there was a mid-entry site with a trend towards more mid-entry sites in patients with (I)VHD vs. IHD (p = 0.061), whereas patients with AF had significant more mid-entry sites than without AF (p = 0.007). CA were present in 251 (95%) patients without AF compared to 39 (98%) with AF. The amount of CA was comparable in patients with IHD and (I)VHD (p > 0.05); AF history was positively associated with the amount of CA (p < 0.05). Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve showed 85.0% sensitivity and 86.4% specificity for cut-off values of CA lines of respectively ≤ 6 mm and ≥ 26 mm. Patients without a mid-entry site or long CA lines (≥ 12 mm) were unlikely to have AF (sensitivity 90%, p = 0.002). There are no significant differences in entry-sites of wavefronts and long lines of CA between patients with IHD compared to (I)VHD. However, patients with AF have more wavefronts entering in the middle of BB and a higher incidence of long CA lines compared to patients without a history of AF. Moreover, in case of absence of a mid-entry site or long line of CA, patients most likely have no history of AF.

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Journal of Clinical Medicine
Department of Internal Medicine

Teuwen, C.P., van der Does, L., Kik, C., Mouws, E., Lanters, E.A.H., Knops, S., … de Groot, N. (2020). Sinus Rhythm Conduction Properties across Bachmann's Bundle: Impact of Underlying Heart Disease and Atrial Fibrillation. Journal of Clinical Medicine, 9(6). doi:10.3390/jcm9061875