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Stuehlinger M.,Innsbruck Medical University | Hoenig S.,Linz General Hospital AKh Linz | Spuller K.,Innsbruck Medical University | Koman C.,Innsbruck Medical University | And 5 more authors.
Journal of Atrial Fibrillation | Year: 2015

Introduction: Pulmonary vein (PV) isolation is the mainstay of catheter treatment of paroxysmal atrial fibrillation (AF). The CoolLoop® cryoablation catheter (AFreeze® GmbH; Innsbruck, Austria) was developed to create wide and complete circular lesions around the PVs. In this study we evaluated feasibility and safety of this novel ablation system in humans. Methods: 10 patients (6M/4F; 57.6±7.6y) with paroxysmal AF were included in 2 referral centers. The CoolLoop® catheter was positioned at each PV antrum using a steerable transseptal sheath. Subsequently, 2-6 double-freezes over 5min were performed at each vein and PV-isolation was assessed thereafter using a circular mapping catheter. During cryoablation of the right PVs, pacing was used to monitor phrenic nerve function. Results: The CoolLoop® catheter could be successfully positioned at each PV. A mean of 5.6±1.8 cryoablations were performed in the LSPV, 5.2±1.6 in the LIPV, 6.3±2.5 in the RSPV and 5.4±1.6 in the RIPV, respectively. Mean procedure time was 251±60min and mean fluoroscopy time was 44.0±13.2min. 6 / 10 LSPV, 6 / 10 LIPV, 5 / 10 RSPV and 6 / 10 RIPV could be isolated exclusively using the novel cryoablation system. One patient developed groin hematoma and a brief episode of ST-elevation due to air embolism was observed in another subject. No other clinical complications occurred during 3 months of follow up. Conclusions: PV-isolation for paroxysmal atrial fibrillation using the CoolLoop® catheter is feasible and appears safe. Clinical long term efficacy still needs to be evaluated and will be compared with established catheters used for AF ablation.

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