Epicardial ablation eliminates ventricular arrhythmias in an experimental model of Brugada syndrome

Hiroshi Morita, Douglas P. Zipes, Shiho T. Morita, John C. Lopshire, Jiashin Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Although radiofrequency catheter ablation (RFCA) has been used to treat patients with Brugada syndrome (BS), it is difficult to eliminate polymorphic ventricular tachycardias (VTs) completely. Objective: The purpose of this study was to determine the efficacy of RFCA in eliminating recurrent VTs in an experimental model of BS. Methods: We optically mapped electrical activity on the epicardial (n = 9) or transmural (n = 8) surface in 17 arterially perfused canine right ventricle preparations. Using pinacidil (5 μM) and pilsicainide (5 μM), we induced a model of BS that showed spontaneous VT. We then applied RFCA to the earliest activation site of premature ventricular complexes (PVCs) in the epicardium (EPI) or endocardium (ENDO) of the RV. Results: After induction of BS, the transmural electrocardiogram (ECG) showed BS-type ECG in association with prominent heterogeneity of action potential duration (APDs) within the EPI (APD: maximum 272 ± 39 ms, minimum 200 ± 39 ms, P < .01), but not within the ENDO. PVCs originated in the EPI region having short APDs and triggered functional reentry causing VT. Multiple epicardial foci of PVCs existed in each tissue (3.7 ± 1.9 foci/tissue). RFCA at the earliest activation site of PVCs in the EPI disconnected the short and long APD regions and eliminated all PVCs and VTs, although APD heterogeneity still existed. All successful RFCA lesions were confined to the EPI. RFCA in the ENDO failed to eliminate VT or PVCs. Conclusion: These experimental observations suggest that RFCA applied to the EPI may be more effective than applied to the ENDO in eliminating VT in patients with BS.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)665-671
Number of pages7
JournalHeart Rhythm
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2009


  • Brugada syndrome
  • Catheter ablation
  • Epicardium
  • Phase 2 reentry
  • Premature Ventricular complex
  • Ventricular fibrillation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)


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