Atrial Pacing Site and Atrioventricular Conduction in Patients Paced for Sinus Node Disease


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Atrial Pacing Site and AV Conduction


Unnecessary ventricular pacing in sinus node disease (SND) must be avoided. To test the hypothesis that in SND, with or without 1st degree atrioventricular (AV) block, cumulative percent ventricular pacing (cum%VP) can be limited by low right atrial septal (LRAS) instead of right atrial appendage (RAA) pacing.


We studied 102 dual-chamber pacemaker recipients with SND. The PQ interval on 12-lead electrocardiogram and the atrial paced to ventricular sensed interval (Ap-Vs) during LRAS and RAA pacing were measured and compared at implantation, 3 months and 1 year of follow-up. Group 1 included 62 patients with baseline PQ interval <200 milliseconds during LRAS (n = 28) versus RAA (n = 34) pacing. Group 2 included 40 patients with baseline PQ ≥200 milliseconds during LRAS (n = 20) versus RAA (n = 20) pacing. cum%VP were measured at 3 months and 1 year.


The characteristics and AV conduction properties were similar and the Ap-Vs interval was significantly shorter in the LRAS than in the RAA pacing group up to 1 year (193 ± 32 milliseconds vs. 220 ± 27 milliseconds in Group 1; P = 0.003, 222 ± 41 milliseconds vs. 281 ± 30 milliseconds in Group 2; P < 0.001). While cumulative percent atrial pacing was consistently similar, cum%VP was significantly smaller during LRAS than RAA pacing (1 ± 1% vs. 8 ± 18% in Group 1; P = 0.03, 7 ± 10% vs. 48 ± 38% in Group 2; P < 0.001). Similar observations were made with or without left atrial (LA) enlargement.


Compared with RAA, LRAS pacing showed shorter AV interval in SND patients with or without 1st degree AV block and LA enlargement. This beneficial effect persisted through 1-year follow-up, and decreased cum%VP significantly.