High incidence of (ultra)low oesophageal temperatures during cryoballoon pulmonary vein isolation for atrial fibrillation

M. M.D. Molenaar*, T. Hesselink, M. F. Scholten, K. Kraaier, D. E. Bouman, M. Brusse-Keizer, Y. J. Stevenhagen, P. F.H.M. van Dessel, B. ten Haken, J. G. Grandjean, J. M. van Opstal

*Corresponding author for this work

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Abstract

Background: Low oesophageal temperatures (OTs) during cryoballoon pulmonary vein isolation (PVI) have been associated with complications. This study assessed the incidence of low OT in clinical practice during cryoballoon PVI and verified possible predictive values for low OT. Methods: Consecutive patients who underwent PVI using the second-generation cryoballoon were retrospectively included. The distance from the oesophagus to the different pulmonary veins (PVs) (OP distance), body mass index (BMI), sex, age, balloon temperature and application time were studied as potential predictors of low OTs. Computed tomography was performed before the procedure to determine the OP distance. OT was measured using an oesophageal temperature probe. Applications were ended prematurely if the OT reached <16 °C. Low and ultralow OT were defined as OT <20 and <16 °C respectively. Results: Two hundred and four patients were included. Low OT was observed in 54 patients (26%) and 27 patients (13%) reached ultralow OTs. OP distance was the only predictor of low OTs after multivariate analysis. A cut-off value of 19 mm showed 96.2% sensitivity and 37.8% specificity in predicting low OTs. No clinically relevant relation was found between low OTs and BMI, age, sex, balloon temperature or application duration. Conclusions: The incidence of low OT was 26% for cryoballoon PVI. OP distance was the only predictor of low OTs. Since an OP distance <19 mm was present in all patients in at least one PV, we recommend routine OT measurement during PVI cryoballoon therapy to prevent oesophagus-related complications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)662-669
Number of pages8
JournalNetherlands heart journal
Volume28
Issue number12
Early online date10 Nov 2020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2020

Keywords

  • Atrial fibrillation
  • Computed tomography
  • Oesophageal temperature
  • Pulmonary vein isolation
  • Safety

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