Ablation Index-guided point-by-point ablation versus Grid annotation-guided dragging for pulmonary vein isolation: A randomized controlled trial

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Introduction: Radiofrequency (RF) atrial fibrillation (AF) ablation using a catheter dragging technique may shorten procedural duration and improve durability of pulmonary vein isolation (PVI) by creating uninterrupted linear ablation lesions. We compared a novel AF ablation approach guided by Grid annotation allowing for “drag lesions” with a standard point-by-point ablation approach in a single-center randomized study. Methods: Eighty-eight paroxysmal or persistent AF patients were randomized 1:1 to undergo RF-PVI with either a catheter dragging ablation technique guided by Grid annotation or point-by-point ablation guided by Ablation Index (AI) annotation. In the Grid annotation arm, ablation was visualized using 1 mm³ grid points coloring red after meeting predefined stability and contact force criteria. In the AI annotation arm, ablation lesions were created in a point-by-point fashion with AI target values set at 380 and 500 for posterior/inferior and anterior/roof segments, respectively. Patients were followed up for 12 months after PVI using ECGs, 24-h Holter monitoring and a mobile-based one-lead ECG device. Results: Procedure time was not different between the two randomization arms (Grid annotation 71 ± 19 min, AI annotation 72 ± 26 min, p =.765). RF time was significantly longer in the Grid annotation arm compared with the AI annotation arm (49 ± 8 min vs. 37 ± 8 min, respectively, p <.001). Atrial tachyarrhythmia recurrence was documented in 10 patients (23%) in the Grid annotation arm compared with 19 patients (42%) in the AI annotation arm with time to recurrence not reaching statistical significance (p =.074). Conclusions: This study shows that a Grid annotation-guided dragging approach provides an alternative to point-by-point RF-PVI using AI annotation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)64-72
Number of pages9
Issue number1
Early online date2021
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2022


  • Ablation Index
  • Grid annotation
  • atrial fibrillation
  • catheter ablation
  • pulmonary vein isolation

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