Background: The comparative efficacy of antiarrhythmic drug (AAD) therapy vs ventricular tachycardia (VT) ablation in arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy (ARVC) is unknown. Objective: We compared outcomes of AAD and/or β-blocker (BB) therapy with those of VT ablation (with AAD/BB) in patients with ARVC who had recurrent VT. Methods: In a multicenter retrospective study, 110 patients with ARVC (mean age 38 ± 17 years; 91[83%] men) with a minimum of 3 VT episodes were included; 77 (70%) were initially treated with AAD/BB and 32 (29%) underwent ablation. Subsequently, 43 of the 77 patients treated with AAD/BB alone also underwent ablation. Overall, 75 patients underwent ablation. Results: When comparing initial AAD/BB therapy (n = 77) and VT ablation (n = 32) after ≥3 VT episodes, a single ablation procedure rendered 35% of patients free of VT at 3 years compared with 28% of AAD/BB-only–treated patients (P =.46). Of the 77 AAD/BB-only–treated patients, 43 subsequently underwent ablation. For all 75 patients who underwent ablation, 56% were VT-free at 3 years after the last ablation procedure. Epicardial ablation was used in 40/75 (53%) and was associated with lower VT recurrence after the last ablation procedure (endocardial/epicardial vs endocardial-only; 71% vs 47% 3-year VT-free survival; P =.05). Importantly, there was no difference in survival free of death or transplantation between the ablation- and AAD/BB-only–treated patients (P =.61). Conclusion: In patients with ARVC and a high VT burden, mortality and transplantation-free survival are not significantly different between drug- and ablation-treated patients. These patients have a high risk of recurrent VT despite drug therapy. Combined endocardial/epicardial ablation is associated with reduced VT recurrence as compared with endocardial-only ablation.
- Arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy
- Catheter ablation
- Ventricular tachycardia
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
- Physiology (medical)