Ph.D. RONALD BERGER M.D

Johns Hopkins Medicine, Baltimore, MD, United States

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Publications (3)10.43 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Magnesium and Arrhythmias. Introduction: Magnesium deficiency has been implicated in the pathogenesis of sudden death, but the investigation of arrhythmic mechanisms has been hindered by difficulties in measuring cellular tissue magnesium stores.Methods and Results: To see if magnesium deficiency is associated with a propensity toward triggered arrhythmias, we measured tissue magnesium levels and QT interval dispersion (as an index of repolarization dispersion) in 40 patients with arrhythmic complaints. Magnesium was measured in sublingual epithelium using X-ray dispersive analysis. QT interval dispersion was assessed on 12-lead surface F-XCs in all patients, and programmed stimulation was performed in 28. The sublingual epithelial magnesium level ([Mg]i), but the not the serum level, correlated Inversely with QT interval dispersion in 40 patients (r = 0.58, P < 0.0.5); in 12 patients undergoing repeat testing on therapy, the change in magnesium also correlated inversely with the change in QT dispersion (r = 0.61, P < 0.05). Patients with left ventricular ejection fractions > 40% had significantly higher tissue magnesium and lower QT dispersion (34.5 ± 0.5 mEq/L, 81 ± 8 msec) than those with left ventricular ejection fractious < 40% (32.7 ± 0.5 mEq/L, P < 0.01, and 114 ± 9 msec, P < 0.05). There was no difference in either [Mg]i, or QT dispersion in the 16 patients with inducible monomorphic ventricular tachycardia versus the 12 noninducible patients.Conclusion: Reduced tissue magnesium stores may represent a significant risk factor for arrhythmias associated with abnormal repolarization, particularly in patients with poor left ventricular systolic function, but may not represent a risk for excitable gap arrhythmias associated with a fixed anatomic substrate (e.g., monomorphic ventricular tachycardia).
    Journal of Cardiovascular Electrophysiology 04/2007; 8(9):980 - 986. · 3.48 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Introduction: There are currently no studies systematically evaluating pulmonary vein (PV) stenosis following catheter ablation of atrial fibrillation (AF) using the anatomic PV ablation approach.Methods and Results: Forty-one patients with AF underwent anatomic PV ablation under the guidance of a three-dimensional electroanatomic mapping system. Gadolinium-enhanced magnetic resonance (MR) imaging was performed in all patients prior to and 8–10 weeks after ablation procedures for screening of PV stenosis. A PV stenosis was defined as a detectable (≥3 mm) narrowing in PV diameter. The severity of stenosis was categorized as mild (<50% stenosis), moderate (50–70%), or severe (>70%). A total 157 PVs were analyzed. A detectable PV narrowing was observed in 60 of 157 PVs (38%). The severity of stenosis was mild in 54 PVs (34%), moderate in five PVs (3.2%), and severe in one PV (0.6%). All mild PV stenoses displayed a concentric pattern. Moderate or severe PV stenosis was only observed in patients with an individual encircling lesion set. Multivariable analysis identified individual encircling lesion set and larger PV size as the independent predictors of detectable PV narrowing. All patients with PV stenosis were asymptomatic and none required treatment.Conclusions: The results of this study demonstrate that detectable PV narrowing occurs in 38% of PVs following anatomic PV ablation. Moderate or severe PV stenosis occurs in 3.8% of PVs. The high incidence of mild stenosis likely reflects reverse remodeling rather than pathological PV stenosis. The probability of moderate or severe PV stenosis appears to be related to creation of individual encircling rather than encircling in pairs lesion.
    Journal of Cardiovascular Electrophysiology 07/2005; 16(8):845 - 852. · 3.48 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Introduction: Anatomically guided left atrial ablation is used increasingly for treatment of atrial fibrillation (AF). Three-dimensional mapping systems used for pulmonary veins (PV) encircling ablation procedures anticipate a stable size and position of the PV orifice. The aim of the current study was therefore to analyze changes of PV orifice size and location throughout the cardiac cycle using cine magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).Methods and Results: Twenty-five healthy volunteers were studied using a 1.5 Tesla MRI system. MR angiograms were acquired with a breath-hold three-dimensional fast-spoiled gradient-echo imaging (3D FSPGR) sequence in the coronal plane before and after gadolinium injection. Maximum intensity projections and multiplanar reformations were performed to reconstruct images of the PV. Bright blood cine imaging in the axial view was acquired by a steady-state free precession pulse sequence. Twenty bright blood images were obtained per cardiac cycle. The axial (anterior-posterior) PV orifice diameter was measured in all 20 images. For analysis of PV movement the location of the orifice posterior edge was plotted on scale paper.PV orifice size depends on the stage of the cardiac cycle with the largest diameter in late atrial diastole and a mean decrease of 32.5% during atrial systole. Location changes of the PV orifice are in the range of up to 7.2 mm and larger in the coronal (lateral-medial) than in the sagittal (anterior-posterior) direction.Conclusion: PV orifice size and location is not as stable as anticipated by three-dimensional mapping systems used for PV encircling left atrial ablation procedures. RF application close to the presumed orifice location should therefore be avoided to minimize the risk of PV stenosis.
    Journal of Cardiovascular Electrophysiology 04/2005; 16(6):582 - 588. · 3.48 Impact Factor