Quantitative Analysis of Localized Sources Identified by Focal Impulse and Rotor Modulation Mapping in Atrial Fibrillation

Peyman Benharash, Eric Buch, Paul Frank, Michael Share, Roderick Tung, Kalyanam Shivkumar, Ravi Mandapati

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

148 Scopus citations


Background - New approaches to ablation of atrial fibrillation (AF) include focal impulse and rotor modulation (FIRM) mapping, and initial results reported with this technique have been favorable. We sought to independently evaluate the approach by analyzing quantitative characteristics of atrial electrograms used to identify rotors and describe acute procedural outcomes of FIRM-guided ablation. Methods and Results - All FIRM-guided ablation procedures (n=24; 50% paroxysmal) at University of California, Los Angeles Medical Center were included for analysis. During AF, unipolar atrial electrograms collected from a 64-pole basket catheter were used to construct phase maps and identify putative AF sources. These sites were targeted for ablation, in conjunction with pulmonary vein isolation in most patients (n=19; 79%). All patients had rotors identified (mean, 2.3±0.9 per patient; 72% in left atrium). Prespecified acute procedural end point was achieved in 12 of 24 (50%) patients: AF termination (n=1), organization (n=3), or >10% slowing of AF cycle length (n=8). Basket electrodes were within 1 cm of 54% of left atrial surface area, and a mean of 31 electrodes per patient showed interpretable atrial electrograms. Offline analysis revealed no differences between rotor and distant sites in dominant frequency or Shannon entropy. Electroanatomic mapping showed no rotational activation at FIRM-identified rotor sites in 23 of 24 patients (96%). Conclusions - FIRM-identified rotor sites did not exhibit quantitative atrial electrogram characteristics expected from rotors and did not differ quantitatively from surrounding tissue. Catheter ablation at these sites, in conjunction with pulmonary vein isolation, resulted in AF termination or organization in a minority of patients (4/24; 17%). Further validation of this approach is necessary.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)554-561
Number of pages8
JournalCirculation: Arrhythmia and Electrophysiology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 4 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • atrial fibrillation
  • catheter ablation
  • electrophysiology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)


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