Patient with sick sinus syndrome and implanted dual-chamber pacemaker with reduced P-wave duration following low interatrial septal pacing: Case report.
A dual-chamber pacemaker (DDD/R) for a sinus node disease is sometimes referred to as a physiological pacemaker as it maintains atrioventricular synchrony, however several clinical trials have proved its inferiority to a nonphysiological single-chamber ventricular back-up pacing. A subject of the study is a 74-year-old woman with a sick sinus syndrome (SSS) and a previously implanted physiological DDD/R pacemaker. The SSS was diagnosed because of patient's very slow sinus rhythm of about 36 bpm, and due to several episodes of dizziness. After the DDD/R implantation the percentage of atrial pacing approached 100%, with almost none ventricular pacing. Sick sinus syndrome, complete Bachmann's bundle block, atrial fibrillation, atrial flutter. The patient was previously implanted with a physiological DDD/R pacemaker. Several years after the implantation, the atrial fibrillation was diagnosed and the pulmonary vein isolation was then performed by cryoablation. During the follow-up after pulmonary vein isolation, the improvement of mitral filling parameters was assessed using echocardiography. Shortly thereafter the patient developed the persistent paroxysm of a typical atrial flutter which was successfully terminated using a radiofrequency ablation. No recurrence thereof has been observed ever since (24 months). The atrial electrode of the pacing system was implanted within the low interatrial septal region that resulted in a reduced P-wave duration compared to native sinus rhythm P-waves. The said morphology was deformed because of the complete Bachmann bundle block. That approach, despite a nonphysiological direction of an atrial activation, yielded relatively short P-waves (paced P-wave: 179 ms vs intrinsic sinus P-wave: 237 ms). It also contributed to a significantly shorter PR interval (paced PR: 204 ms vs sinus rhythm PR: 254 ms). The authors took into consideration different aspects of alternative right atrial pacing sites. This report has shown that in some patients with a sinus node disease, low interatrial septal pacing can reduce the P-wave duration but does not prevent from the development of atrial arrhythmias.