Int J Med Sci 2009; 6(1):28-36. doi:10.7150/ijms.6.28 This issue
1. Department of Cardiology and Angiology, Ruhr-University Bochum, Germany
2. Department of Cardiology and Angiology, General Hospital Hagen, Germany
Introduction: The ablation of supraventricular tachycardias (SVT) using radiofrequency energy (RF) is a procedure with a high primary success rate. However, there is a scarcity of data regarding the long term outcome, particularly with respect to quality of life (QoL).
Methods and Results: In this retrospective single-center study, 454 patients who underwent ablation of SVT between 2002 and 2007 received a detailed questionnaire addressing matters of QoL. The questionnaire was a modified version of the SF-36 Health Survey questionnaire and the Symptom Checklist – Frequency and Severity Scale.
After a mean follow up of 4.5±1.3 years, 309 (68.1%) of the contacted 454 patients (269 female, 59.2%, mean age 58+/-6.5) completed the questionnaire. Despite of 27% of relapses in the study group, 91.7% considered the procedure a long-term success. The remainder of patients experienced no change in (3.7%) or worsening of (4.7%) symptoms. There were no significant differences between the various types of SVT (p=1). QoL in patients with Atrio-Ventricular Nodal Reentry Tachycardia (AVNRT) and Atrio-Ventricular Reentry Tachycardia (AVRT) improved significantly (p<0.0005 respectively p<0.043), whereas QoL in patients with Ectopic Atrial Tachycardia (EAT) showed a non-significant trend towards improvement. Main symptoms before ablation, such as tachycardia (91.5%), increased incidence of tachycardia episodes over time (78.1%), anxiety (55.5%) and reduced physical capacity in daily life (52%) were significantly improved after ablation (p<0.0001).
Conclusion: The high acute ablation success of SVT persists for years in long term follow up and translates into a significant improvement of QoL in most patients.
Keywords: Quality of Life, Ablation, SVT, Atrium, Radio Frequency