Relation between late potentials on the body surface and directly recorded fragmented electrograms in patients with ventricular tachycardia.

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The relation between low-amplitude, late potentials on the body surface and directly recorded electrograms in 8 patients with and 11 patients without ventricular tachycardia (VT) was studied. Bipolar X,Y,Z leads were signal-averaged and filtered with a digital technique. All patients had catheter endocardial left ventricular maps. The VT group had medically intractable VT and an endocardial excision was performed for control of VT. Before bypass, epicardial maps were obtained in the operating room. All studies were performed during normal sinus rhythm. Four patients without VT, each with a previous myocardial infarction, had fragmented endocardial electrograms recorded at 2.0 +/- 1.2 sites. The latest electrogram for each patient ended 87 +/- 8 ms after QRS onset, within the high-amplitude portion of the filtered QRS complex. All patients with VT had fragmented electrograms recorded at 6.1 +/- 3.1 sites/patient. Eighty-eight percent of the fragmented electrograms were endocardial. The latest fragmented electrogram for each patient ended 161 +/- 43 ms after QRS onset, significantly later than the fragmented electrograms from the patients without VT (p = 0.002). Six VT patients had low-amplitude, late potentials at the end of the filtered QRS complex. In these patients, the last 40 ms of the filtered QRS complex contained a higher proportion of fragmented electrograms compared with earlier segments of the QRS complex (68% versus 27%, p less than 0.001). Two patients with VT did not have late potentials. One patient with left bundle branch block had delayed left ventricular epicardial activation which masked the fragmented electrograms. The other had fragmented electrograms of brief duration which ended 80 +/- 12 ms after QRS onset, during the time of normal ventricular activation. It is concluded that the late potential corresponds to delayed, fragmented electrographic activity. Failure to record a late potential may arise from delayed ventricular activation at other sites from bundle branch block or fragmented electrograms of a brief duration.





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Medicine and Health Sciences




Department of Medicine

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