Low Exposure Radiation with Conventional Guided Radiofrequency Catheter Ablation in Pregnant Women


  • The first two authors contributed equally to this work

  • Dr. Gerardo Rodríguez Díez has received a travel grant from the Mexican Society of Cardiology.

Address for reprints: Antonio Berruezo, M.D., Arrhythmia Section, Cardiology Department, Thorax Institute, Hospital Clínic, Villarroel 170, 08036, Barcelona, Spain. Fax: 34-934-513045; e-mail: berruezo@clinic.ub.es


Cardiac arrhythmias in pregnant women are a common entity and often drug-refractory. The major concern about using radiofrequency (RF) catheter ablation guided by fluoroscopy to treat arrhythmias during pregnancy is the potential consequences of exposing the fetus to radiation. We present two pregnant patients with incessant and life-threatening supraventricular tachycardias successfully treated by conventional RF ablation under strict radioactive dosimeter surveillance. The availability of better fluoroscopy and lead shielding techniques allows to perform RF ablation of drug-refractory and poorly tolerated supraventricular arrhythmias at any stage of pregnancy, with an appropriate tracking of the radiation dose received by both mother and fetus.