Correlative anatomy for the electrophysiologist: Ablation for atrial fibrillation. Part II: Regional anatomy of the atria and relevance to damage of adjacent structures during AF ablation

Paula G. MacEdo, Suraj Kapa, Jennifer A. Mears, Amy Fratianni, Samuel J. Asirvatham

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

25 Scopus citations


Anatomy for Atrial Fibrillation. Ablation procedures for atrial fibrillation have become an established and increasingly used option for managing patients with symptomatic arrhythmia. The anatomic structures relevant to the pathogenesis of atrial fibrillation and ablation procedures are varied and include the pulmonary veins, other thoracic veins, the left atrial myocardium, and autonomic ganglia. Exact regional anatomic knowledge of these structures is essential to allow correlation with fluoroscopy and electrograms and, importantly, to avoid complications from damage of adjacent structures within the chest. We present this information as a series of 2 articles. In a prior issue, we have discussed the thoracic vein anatomy relevant to paroxysmal atrial fibrillation. In the present article, we focus on the atria themselves, the autonomic ganglia, and anatomic issues relevant for minimizing complications during atrial fibrillation ablation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)829-836
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of cardiovascular electrophysiology
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2010



  • ablation
  • anatomy
  • atrial fibrillation
  • autonomics
  • pulmonary veins

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)

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