Atrial electrophysiologic properties of patients with asymptomatic wolff-parkinson-white syndrome

A. Michei, L. Padeletti, D. Monizzi, M. C. Porciani, R. Musante, V. Cupelli, P. Delise, D. D'este

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


To evaluate the existence of a peculiar atrial electrophysiologic substrate, we studied 18 patients with asymptomatic Wolff-Parkinson-White (WPW) syndrome. These patients were compared with 10 agematched normal subjects (N). Effective and functional refractory periods were determined at two right atrial sites (high and low in the lateral wall), during atrial pacing (100 min-1) and at twice diastolic threshold. Disperson (D) of effective (ERP) and functional (FRP) refractoriness was evaluated as the difference between refractory periods at the two atrial sites. WPW patients showed significantly lower mean values of effective and functional refractoriness at both atrial sites and significantly higher mean values of D-ERP and D-FRP. Moreover, in calculating the highest normal values of D-ERP and D-FRP (as mean values of N plus 2SD) it was observed that WPW with abnormal values of D showed a statistically (x2 test) higher incidence (100%) of induced atrial fibrillation (AF). These findings indicate the existence of both an abnormal atrial electrophysiologic substrate and of a higher vulnerability in WPW. Finally, AF was induced generally at the site with the lower refractoriness (i.e. low lateral site). This should be taken into account when considering how atrial fibrillation can be induced more easily.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)479-483
Number of pages5
JournalEuropean Heart Journal
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 1988


  • Atrial fibrillation
  • Atrium
  • Electrophysiology
  • Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Statistics, Probability and Uncertainty
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Physiology (medical)
  • Physiology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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