Effects of pacing on stationary reentrant activity. Theoretical and experimental study.

TitleEffects of pacing on stationary reentrant activity. Theoretical and experimental study.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication1995
AuthorsDavidenko, JM, Salomonsz, R, Pertsov, AV, Baxter, B, Jalife, J
JournalCirc Res
Date Published12/1995
KeywordsAcceleration, Animals, Cardiac Pacing, Artificial, Computer Simulation, Deceleration, Electrocardiography, Models, Cardiovascular, Sheep, Tachycardia, Ventricular

It is well known that electrical pacing may either terminate or change the rate and/or ECG appearance of reentrant ventricular tachycardia. However, the dynamics of interaction of reentrant waves with waves initiated by external pacing are poorly understood. Prevailing concepts are based on simplistic models in which propagation occurs in one-dimensional rings of cardiac tissue. Since reentrant activation in the ventricles occurs in two or three dimensions, such concepts might be insufficient to explain the mechanisms of pacing-induced effects. We used numerical and biological models of cardiac excitation to explore the phenomena, which may take place as a result of electrical pacing during functionally determined reentry. Computer simulations of a two-dimensional array of electrically coupled FitzHugh-Nagumo cells were used to predict the response patterns expected from thin slices of sheep ventricular epicardial muscle, in which self-sustaining reentrant activity in the form of spiral waves was consistently initiated by premature stimulation and monitored by means of video mapping techniques. The results show that depending on their timing and shape, externally induced waves may collide with the self-sustaining spiral and result in one of three possible outcomes: (1) direct annihilation of the spiral, (2) multiplication of the spiral, or (3) shift of the spiral center (ie, core). Multiplication and shift of the spiral core were attended by changes in rate and morphology of the arrhythmia as seen by "pseudo-ECGs." Furthermore, delayed termination (ie, termination of the activity one to three cycles after the stimulus) occurred after both multiplication and shift of the spiral center. Both numerical predictions and experimental results support the hypothesis that whether a pacing stimulus will terminate a reentrant arrhythmia or modify its ECG appearance depends on whether the interactions between the externally induced wave and the spiral wave result in the de novo formation of one or more "wavebreaks." The final outcome depends on the stimulus parameters (ie, position and size of the electrodes and timing of the stimulus) as well as on the position of the newly formed wavebreak(s) in relation to that of the original wave.

Alternate JournalCirc. Res.
PubMed ID7586230

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