Mechanisms of cardiac arrhythmias after the Mustard operation for transposition of the great arteries

Paul C. Gillette, John D. Kugler, Arthur Garson, Howard P. Gutgesell, Desmond F. Duff, Dan G. McNamara

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To determine the mechanisms of the cardiac arrhythmias frequently seen after the Mustard operation for transposition of the great arteries, intracardiac electrophysiologic studies were performed in 52 children 1 to 8 years after the Mustard operation. Sinus nodal automaticity as judged from the response to rapid atrial pacing was abnormal in 28 of the 52 children. Sinoatrial conduction (conduction of the sinus impulse to the atrium) was found to be abnormal in three of nine patients studied with the atrial extrastimulus method. Conduction of the sinus impulse from the high right atrium to the atrioventricular (A-V) node was abnormally delayed in only 2 of 41 subjects. The low lateral wall of the right atrium was depolarlzed late in 3 of 11 subjects (including the preceding 2). Two subjects showed delayed A-V nodal conduction and one delayed His-Purkinje conduction. The mechanism of supraventricular tachycardia induced in the laboratory was determined to be sinoatrial nodal reentry in four subjects and atrial muscle reentry in four. Two of the four with atrial muscle reentry had prolonged high right atrium to low lateral right atrium intervals during sinus rhythm. Thus, damage to the sinus node remains the most common cause of arrhythmias after the Mustard operation. In addition, delayed atrial conduction may predispose to atrial muscle reentrant tachycardia.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1225-1230
Number of pages6
JournalThe American Journal of Cardiology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1980

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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