Background: The combination of contact force (CF) and local impedance (LI) may improve tissue characterization and lesion prediction during radiofrequency (RF) ablation. Objective: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the utility of LI combined with CF in assessing RF ablation efficacy. Methods: An LI catheter with CF sensing was evaluated in swine (n = 11) and in vitro (n = 14). The relationship between LI and CF in different tissue types was evaluated in vivo. Discrete lesions were created in vitro and in vivo at a range of forces, powers, and durations. Finally, an intercaval line was created in 3 groups at 30 W: 30s, Δ20Ω, and Δ30Ω. In the Δ20Ω and Δ30Ω groups, the user ablated until a 20 or 30 Ω LI drop. In the 30s group, the user was blinded to LI. Results: In vivo, distinction in LI was found between the blood pool and the myocardium (blood pool: 122 ± 7.02 Ω; perpendicular contact: 220 ± 29 Ω; parallel contact: 207 ± 31 Ω). LI drop correlated with lesion depth both in vitro (R = 0.84) and in vivo (R = 0.79), informing sufficient lesion creation (LI drop >20 Ω) and warning of excessive heating (LI drop >65 Ω). When creating an intercaval line, the total RF time was significantly reduced when using LI guidance (6.4 ± 2 minutes in Δ20Ω and 8.1 ± 1 minutes in Δ30Ω) compared with a standard 30-second workflow (18 ± 7 minutes). Acute conduction block was achieved in all Δ30Ω and 30s lines. Conclusion: The addition of LI to CF provides feedback on both electrical and mechanical loads. This provides information on tissue type and catheter-tissue coupling; provides feedback on whether volumetric tissue heating is inadequate, sufficient, or excessive; and reduces ablation time.
- Contact force
- Electroanatomic mapping
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
- Physiology (medical)