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Meta-Analysis of the Effectiveness and Safety of Catheter Ablation of Atrial Fibrillation in Patients With Versus Without Left Ventricular Systolic Dysfunction

      Catheter ablation is a promising therapy for atrial fibrillation (AF), but its utility in patients with left ventricular systolic dysfunction (LVSD) is uncertain. The objectives of this study were to perform a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized and observational studies comparing the rates of recurrent AF, atrial tachycardia (AT), and complications after AF catheter ablation in those with versus without LVSD and to summarize the impact of catheter ablation on the left ventricular ejection fraction. Seven observational studies and 1 randomized trial were included (total n = 1,851). Follow-up ranged from 6 to 27 months. In those with LVSD, 28% to 55% were free of AF or AT on follow-up after 1 AF catheter ablation, increasing to 64% to 96% after a mean of 1.4 procedures. The relative risk for recurrent AF or AT in those with versus without LVSD was 1.5 (95% confidence interval 1.2 to 1.8, p <0.001) after 1 procedure and 1.2 (95% confidence interval 0.9 to 1.5, p = 0.2) after multiple procedures. No difference in complications was observed in patients with (3.5%) versus without (2.5%) heart failure (p = 0.55). After catheter ablation, those with LVSD experienced a pooled absolute improvement in the left ventricular ejection fraction of 0.11 (95% confidence interval 0.07 to 0.14, p <0.001). In conclusion, patients with and without LVSD had similar risk for recurrent AF or AT after catheter ablation, but repeat procedures were required more often in those with LVSD. Significant improvements in left ventricular ejection fractions after ablation were observed in those with LVSD. Randomized trials are needed given the limitations of present data.
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