Programmed Electrical Stimulation of the Ventricle: An Efficient, Sensitive, and Specific Protocol

JOHN D. FISHER, SOO G. KIM, KEVIN J. FERRICK, SAMIR G. ARTOUL, DANIEL FINK, JAMES A. ROTH, DEBRA R. JOHNSTON, HENRY R. WILLIAMS

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

A relatively simple and evident ventricular programmed electrical stimulation (PES) protocol was developed, capable of achieving high degrees of sensitivity and specificity. In a series of 481 subjects, 1, 2, and 3 extrasfimuli (ES) were used successively during sinus rhythm and ventricular pacing at two drive cycle lengths, at one or more ventricular sites, together with rapid ventricular pacing, and other maneuvers such as isoproterenol infusion. Three ES were used immediately after two ES at each drive rate, rather than returning after completion of the protocol with two ES. Using the protocol, appropriate arrhythmias could be induced in 88% of all patients with ventricularfibrillation, 84% of all patients with sustained ventricular tachycardia (91% with underlying coronary disease), and 58% of patients with severe nonsus‐tained ventricular tachycardia. There were significant differences in inducibility between patients whose ventricular arrhythmias were due to coronary artery disease and other causes. In contrast, sustained ventricular arrhythmias fall ventricular fibrillation) could be induced in only 5% of a control group of control patients, for a specificity of 95%. The protocol described is simpler and more efficient than those that use exhaustive testing of two ES before going to three ES. Three ES during sinus rhythm proved to be the most productive step, with a higher yield ratio (true:false‐positives) than two ES or three ES during pacing, especially at fasterrates. Greater efficiency is also achieved by leaving the timing of an extrastimulus just beyond its effective refractory period when an additional extrastimulus is to be added, compared to protocols in which the extrastimulus is moved later in the cycle and then decremented in tandem with the additional extrastimulus. Coupling intervals < 200 msec produced some false‐positives, but fewer overall than intervals < 200 msec, and with yield ratios comparable to other protocol steps. The protocol described meets NASPE standardsfor ventricular programmed stimulation protocols, and with its demonstrated specificity and relative simplicity and efficiency may be useful as a model for groups not yet committed to an alternative protocol.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)435-450
Number of pages16
JournalPacing and Clinical Electrophysiology
Volume15
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1992

Keywords

  • elctrophysiology protocols
  • programmed electrical stimulation
  • ventricular fibrillation
  • ventricular tachycardia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

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