SUM‐KIN LEUNG

Kwong Wah Hospital, Hong Kong, Hong Kong

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Publications (29)41.95 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors reduce mortality in patients with acute myocardial infarction (AMI), but these benefits might be limited by acute hemodynamic changes and difficulties in titrating to recommended doses. The objective of this study was to compare the hemodynamic changes and tolerability of perindopril with captopril after AMI. We randomized 212 patients to receive either captopril (n = 102) or perindopril (n = 110) within 72 hours of AMI. Captopril was given as an initial dose of 6.25 mg, and then 50 mg/day on day 1 and 100 mg/day thereafter. The corresponding doses of perindopril were 2, 4, and 8 mg/day. Acute hemodynamic changes, the percentage of patients who reached target doses, and in-hospital and 6-month cardiovascular events were monitored. Baseline clinical characteristics of the 2 groups were identical, but patients randomized to perindopril were in a higher Killip class (1.4 +/- 0.6 vs 1.2 +/- 0.5, p = 0.05). During the first 6 hours, treatment with perindopril resulted in higher minimal systolic (97 +/- 15 vs 91 +/- 14 mm Hg, p <0.01) and diastolic blood pressure (BP) (57 +/- 11 vs 54 +/- 10 mm Hg, p <0.02), later occurrence of minimal BP (3.6 +/- 0.2 vs 2.7 +/- 0.1 hour, p <0.001), and a lower incidence of persistent hypotension with systolic BP < 90 mm Hg for > or =1 hour (5% vs 16%; p < 0.01) compared with captopril. At initial administration, target doses of perindopril and captopril were attained in 97% and 82% of the patients, respectively (p < 0.01). After 6 months, there were no differences between patients treated with perindopril and captopril in mortality rates (6% vs 13%, p = 0.16) and need for revascularization (20% vs 21%, p = 0.9). Thus, in patients during AMI, perindopril treatment showed better short-term tolerance than treatment with captopril, with significantly less acute hemodynamic changes and fewer withdrawals.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2002 · The American Journal of Cardiology
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    ABSTRACT: AF with a fast ventricular response may cause ventricular mechanical impairment, though whether short-lasting AF with satisfactory rate control may affect ventricular function is unknown. This study investigated if prompt cardioversion by an implantable atrial defibrillator (IAD) may prevent left (LV) and right ventricular (RV) systolic and diastolic dysfunction. Ten patients (mean age 61 +/- 9 years, 8 men) with paroxysmal AF without structural heart disease who received an IAD were studied by echocardiography and tissue Doppler imaging (TDI) for both ventricles. Measurements were made during baseline sinus rhythm and at 1-minute, 20-minute, 4-hour, and 1-week postcardioversion of an episode of spontaneous AF. The occurrence of AF and the ventricular rate were monitored at 2-hour intervals by the device. There were 50 episodes of AF with a mean duration of 8.8 +/- 8.9 days (2 hours to 37 days). There was no difference in M-mode measured LV fractional shortening and ejection fraction between baseline sinus rhythm and after cardioversion. However, the TDI derived myocardial systolic velocity (TDI-S) was significantly lower at 1-minute postcardioversion and was normalized at 1 week in both LVs (baseline: 5.7 +/- 1.8, 1 minute: 4.2 +/- 1.0, 20 minutes: 4.3 +/- 0.9, 4 hours: 4.8 +/- 1.0, 1 week: 5.5 +/- 1.8 cm/s; P < 0.005 when comparing 1 minute and 20 minutes to baseline; P < 0.05 when comparing 4 hour to baseline) and RV (baseline: 10.4 +/- 2.1, 1 minute: 7.8 +/- 1.4, 20 minutes: 8.1 +/- 1.2, 4 hours: 9.2 +/- 1.5, 1 week: 10.0 +/- 2.0 cm/s; P < 0.005 when comparing 1 minute, 20 minutes, and 4 hours to baseline). For diastolic function, transmitral Doppler study showed a decrease in early filling velocity at 1 minute (P < 0.05) and 20 minutes (P < 0.005), which was normalized at 4 hours. There was no change in transtricuspid Doppler flow. However, TDI derived myocardial early filling velocity was decreased in the LV (baseline: 6.0 +/- 2.8, 1 minute: 5.4 +/- 2.3, 20 minutes: 5.4 +/- 2.1, 4 hours: 6.1 +/- 2.2, 1 week: 5.8 +/- 1.7 cm/s; P < 0.05 when comparing 1 minute and 20 minutes to baseline) and RV (baseline: 8.9 +/- 3.5, 1 minute: 7.9 +/- 3.3, 20 minutes: 8.1 +/- 3.3, 4 hours: 8.5 +/- 2.9, 1 week: 8.4 +/- 3.5 cm/s; P < 0.05 when comparing 1 minute to baseline). AF of a longer duration (> 48 hours) resulted in a more depressed TDI-S in LV (> 48 hours: 4.2 +/- 1.0, < or = 48 hours: 5.3 +/- 1.3 cm/s; P < 0.01). Shocks in sinus rhythm did not affect any of the above echocardiographic parameters. Therefore, despite adequate rate control, short-lasting AF impairs systolic and diastolic function in both ventricles, which improves gradually after cardioversion. Early restoration of sinus rhythm by an IAD minimizes ventricular dysfunction. TDI is a sensitive tool to assess early systolic and diastolic dysfunction.
    No preview · Article · Jul 2001 · Pacing and Clinical Electrophysiology
  • H F Tse · C P Lau · S K Leung
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to assess the feasibility of a cephalic vein cutdown and venography technique for implantation of a pacemaker or ICD and to determine the causes of failure of cephalic vein cutdown. In consecutive patients who underwent pacemaker or ICD implants, a modified cephalic vein guidewire technique was performed. This technique was attempted in 289 pacemaker implants and 26 ICD implants (155 men, 160 women; mean age 74 +/- 10 years). The success rate for implantation of a single chamber and a dual chamber device by using this technique alone was 84% (54/64) and 74% (185/251), respectively (P = 0.10). In an additional 7% of patients with dual chamber implant, the cephalic vein can be used for passage of the ventricular lead. A cephalic venogram was required in 82 patients and facilitated the passage of the guidewire in 62 (79%) of them. No complication related to vascular access was observed with this technique. This technique failed in 54 (17%) of 315 patients due to (1) failure of cephalic vein isolation (48%), (2) venous stenosis (24%), or (3) venous torturosity or anomalies (28%). There were no significant differences in the patient's age, sex, type of device, and the fluoroscopic time for lead placement between patients with or without successful lead placement using this technique (all P > 0.05). In conclusion, a simple modification of the cephalic vein guidewire technique together with venography has facilitated the placement of leads during pacemaker and ICD implant. This technique is safe and applicable in the majority of patients and avoids the risk of subclavian puncture.
    No preview · Article · Apr 2001 · Pacing and Clinical Electrophysiology
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    ABSTRACT: Automatic mode switching (AMS) allows patients with dual chamber pacemakers who develop paroxysmal AF to have a controlled ventricular rate. The aim of this study was to (1) compare the rate-controlled behavior of three AMS algorithms in response to AF, in terms of speed and stability of response and resynchronization to sinus rhythm, and (2) compare the influence of pacemaker programming on optimal mode switching. We studied 17 patients (12 men, 5 women; mean age 59 +/- 15 years) who developed AF during electrophysiological study. Unfiltered bipolar atrial electrograms during sinus rhythm and AF were recorded onto high fidelity tapes and replayed into the atrial port of three dual chamber pacemakers with different mode switching algorithms (Thera, Marathon, Meta). The Thera pacemaker uses rate smoothing, and mode switches occur when mean sensed atrial rate exceeds the predefined AMS rate (MR). Marathon mode switches after a programmable number of consecutive rapid atrial events (NR). Meta DDDR monitors the atrial rate by a counter for atrial cycles faster than the programmed AMS rate. It increases or decreases the counter if the atrial cycle length is shorter or longer than the programmed AMS interval, respectively. Mode switch occurs when the AF detection criteria are met (CR). A total of 260 rhythms were studied. NR was significantly faster than MR and CR (latency 2.5 +/- 3 s vs 26 +/- 7 s vs 15 +/- 22 s, respectively, P < 0.0001). During sustained AF, MR resulted in the most stable and regular ventricular rhythm compared to NR or CR. In CR, ventricular rate oscillated between AMS and atrial tracking (cycle length variations: 44 +/- 2 s vs 346 +/- 109 s vs 672 +/- 84 s, P < 0.05). At resumption of sinus rhythm, MR resynchronized after 143 +/- 22 s versus 3.4 +/- 0.7 s for NR and 5.9 +/- 1.1 s for CR, resulting in long periods of AV dissociation when a VVI/VVIR mode is used after AMS. Programming of atrial refractory periods did not affect AMS response, although the speed of AMS onset can be adjusted by programming of onset criteria in the Meta DDDR. AMS algorithms differ in their ability to handle recorded clinical atrial arrhythmias. The rapid-responding algorithm exhibits rate instability, whereas slow responding algorithm shows a long delay in response and risk of AV dissociation. Thus different instrumentation of AMS may have clinical implications in patients with dual chamber pacemakers who develop AF.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2001 · Pacing and Clinical Electrophysiology
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    ABSTRACT: This study evaluated the performance of a new lead for permanent left ventricular (LV) pacing via the coronary sinus (CS) in four men and nine women (mean age = 71 +/- 13 years) with sick sinus syndrome. It consists of a 75-cm-long, 4.8-Fr, unipolar ventricular lead with a distal portion preshaped in an S curve to provide steerability and stability within the CS. Its efficacy and stability for permanent LV pacing were tested at implant, predischarge, and at 1, 3 and 6 months of follow-up. The lead was successfully implanted in 11/13 patients (85%) within a mean fluoroscopy time of 35 +/- 22 minutes. The final positions of the electrodes at the tip of the lead within venous tributaries of the CS were: (1) anterior (n = 2, 18%); (2) posterolateral (n = 5, 45%); and (3) the lateral (n = 4, 36%). Unsuccessful implants were due to unstable lead position (n = 1), or high pacing threshold (n = 1). There was no postprocedural lead dislodgment or significant changes in the R wave amplitude, LV pacing threshold and lead impedance up to 6 months of follow-up. In summary, this initial experience suggests that this new lead offers safe and reliable permanent LV pacing via the CS in the majority of patients and may be used in isolation or in conjunction with right ventricular pacing for biventricular synchronization.
    No preview · Article · Dec 2000 · Pacing and Clinical Electrophysiology
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    ABSTRACT: Peak endocardial acceleration (PEA) measured by an implantable acceleration sensor inside the tip of a pacing lead reflects ventricular filling and myocardial contractility. The contribution of the plateau phase of PEA as an indicator of optimal ventricular filling, hence of the appropriate atrioventricular interval (AVI) at rest and during exercise, was studied in 12 patients (age 69 +/- 6 years) with complete AV block and a PEA sensing DDDR pacemakers (Living 1 Plus, Sorin Biomedica). At a mean resting heart rate of 79 +/- 15 beats/min, the mean AVI optimized by PEA versus Doppler echocardiography (echo) were identical (142 +/- 37 vs 146 +/- 26 ms, P = 0.59). During submaximal exercise at a mean heart rate of 134 +/- 6 beats/min, AVI optimized by PEA was 135 +/- 37 ms. Cardiac output at rest, measured by the CO2 rebreathing method, was comparable with AVI determined by echo versus PEA (4.3 +/- 2.9 and 3.7 +/- 2.4 L/min, respectively), and increased to the same extent (8.0 +/- 3.9 vs 8.3 +/- 5.2 L/min) during submaximal exercise. In patients with AV block, AVI automatically set by PEA was comparable with AVI manually optimized by Doppler echocardiography and was associated with comparable exercise induced hemodynamic changes.
    No preview · Article · Dec 2000 · Pacing and Clinical Electrophysiology
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    ABSTRACT: Overdrive right atrial pacing has been used to prevent atrial fibrillation, but its efficacy in atrial fibrillation prevention and the patient tolerability and quality of life during high rate pacing remain uncertain. The objective of this study was to test the effects of a consistent atrial pacing algorithm that automatically paced the atrium at 30 ms shorter than the sinus P-P interval for atrial fibrillation prevention. Fifteen patients with sick sinus syndrome implanted with a Thera DR (model 7940 or 7960, Medtronic Inc.) were randomly programmed to rate adaptive dual chamber pacing (DDDR) or DDDR + consistent atrial pacing mode, each for an 8-week study period. The efficacy of consistent atrial pacing was assessed by the number of automatic mode switching and the number of premature atrial complexes. Symptoms and quality of life were assessed by the SF-36 quality of life questionnaire and an atrial fibrillation symptom checklist. The percentage of atrial pacing increased from 57 +/- 32% to 86 +/- 28%. Overall, there was no significant difference in the number of automatic mode switching episodes between DDDR and DDDR + consistent atrial pacing (47 +/- 90 vs 42 +/- 87, P > 0.05), but a significant reduction in premature atrial complexes by 74.7% (P < 0.001). There was no undue increase in atrial rate by the DDDR + consistent atrial pacing mode versus DDDR (63 +/- 13 vs 70 +/- 7 bpm). There was no significant difference in quality of life scores and symptom severity on frequency between the two modes of pacing, but a trend towards a lower frequency of symptoms in the DDDR + consistent atrial pacing mode compared with baseline (29.5 +/- 10.2 vs 25.1 +/- 9.7, P = 0.07). An algorithm that provides consistent atrial overdrive pacing can suppress atrial fibrillation triggering premature atrial complexes without the need to increase the overall atrial rate compared with conventional pacing. The algorithm appears to be well-tolerated, but further studies are needed to address the clinical impact of this atrial fibrillation prevention algorithm.
    Preview · Article · Oct 2000 · Europace
  • S K Leung · C P Lau · C.T.-F. Lam · H F Tse · K Lee · W K Chan · Z Leung
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    ABSTRACT: Automatic mode switching (AMS) is a useful means to avoid rapid ventricular response during atrial fibrillation (AF), but AMS cannot occur if the detected atrial rate during AF is below the mode switching criteria. This may be the result of antiarrhythmic medications, or when the atrial events fall within the atrial blanking period, or if the atrial amplitudes during AF are too small to be sensed. We hypothesize that the addition of an automatic rate switching (ARS) algorithm may complement AMS response during AF with different detected atrial rates. We studied the Marathon DDDR pacemaker (Model 294-09, Intermedics Inc.) with the AMS and ARS algorithms that are independently programmable but can also operate in combination. AF sensed above the AMS rate (160 beats/min) will lead to VDIR pacing, whereas AF below AMS rate will be tracked at an interim rate as dictate by the ARS, at a ventricular response that is 20 beats/min above the sensor indicated rate. Atrial tachyarrhythmias were simulated by chest wall stimulation (CWS). CWS was applied to 33 patients (16 men, 17 women, mean age 69 +/- 11 years) with a Marathon DDDR pacemaker using an external pacer to simulate AF occurring at two rate levels: above the AMS rate (programmed at 160 beats/min) at 180 beats/min and below the AMS rate at 120 beats/min. The maximum, minimum, and mean ventricular rates during CWS in DDDR mode with AMS alone, ARS alone, and their combination were compared. During CWS at 120 beats/min, the AMS plus ARS setting showed a mean ventricular rate of 79 +/- 3 beats/min and 124 +/- 14 beats/min in the AMS setting alone (P < 0.01). With CWS at 180 beats/min, the mean ventricular rate in the AMS plus ARS setting compared to the AMS setting alone was not significantly different. However, the variation in ventricular pacing rate was 7 +/- 14 beats/min in the AMS plus ARS setting and 40 +/- 42 beats/min in the AMS setting (P < 0.05). In conclusion, AMS is effective for simulated atrial tachyarrhythmias sensed above the AMS rate. Combined AMS with ARS is useful to handle simulated atrial tachyarrhythmia at a slower rate and to avoid rate fluctuation during AMS. There is also a possibility that this can be applied to the naturally occurring atrial tachyarrhythmias.
    No preview · Article · Jun 2000 · Pacing and Clinical Electrophysiology
  • S K Leung · C P Lau
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    ABSTRACT: This article reviews the recent major developments in the field of rate adaptive pacing. Including, the improved instrumentation of existing sensors, the use of multiple sensors to enhance sensor specificity or sensitivity, and the automation of sensor calibration. The physiologic benefits and programming of rate adaptive pacing are reviewed.
    No preview · Article · Mar 2000 · Cardiology Clinics
  • H F Tse · C P Lau · C M Yu · T F Lam · S K Leung · Gregory M Ayers
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    ABSTRACT: The implantable atrial defibrillator is a new potential nonpharmacologic treatment for recurrent atrial fibrillation. The results of this study suggest that a simplified lead configuration, with a single-pass, dual-electrode atrial defibrillation lead can be used for both atrial fibrillation detection and defibrillation with an implantable atrial defibrillator.
    No preview · Article · Oct 1999 · The American Journal of Cardiology
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    ABSTRACT: Automatic mode switching (AMS) during atrial fibrillation (AF) in a dual chamber pacemaker is dependent on the accurate detection of an atrial electrogram. As atrial amplitude is often reduced during AF compared with sinus rhythm, this may result in failure of the AMS and a rapid ventricular response. In addition, undersensing of AF may result in competitive atrial pacing that sustains AF. We hypothesize that the use of automatic atrial sensitivity adjustment (ASA) may enhance AF sensing in a dual chamber pacemaker. We studied the AMS response with and without ASA of the Marathon DDDR (model 294-09, Intermedics, Inc.) pacemaker in 10 patients with paroxysmal AF. Intracardiac atrial electrograms during sinus rhythm and induced AF were recorded onto an analog tape recorder. They were replayed into the pacemaker to assess the AMS response at various starting atrial sensitivities from 3.5 to 0.8 mV with ASA activated and without. Atrial amplitude was reduced during AF. The higher the initial atrial sensitivity, the better is the AMS response and the lower the incidence of AF undersensing. The percentage of AMS before ASA ranged from 2.1% at an atrial sensitivity 3.5 mV to 95.6% at highest sensitivity of 0.5 mV (P < 0.05). After 10 minutes of ASA, the AMS response was improved from 1.7% to 50.6% and from 9.5% to 50.9% at starting atrial sensitivities of 3.5 mV and 2.5 mV, respectively (P < 0.05 in both instances). Undersensing during AF was also significantly reduced after ASA from 70% to 10% at a sensitivity of 3.5 mV and from 33.8% to 10.8% at 2.5 mV. There was no increase in oversensing. In four patients with paroxysmal AF with an implanted pacemaker, ASA improved AMS response in patients with a low implant atrial amplitude. In conclusion, efficacy of mode switching and AF sensing are dependent on the programmed atrial sensitivity, which can be enhanced with the use of ASA, particularly when P wave sensing during AF is borderline.
    No preview · Article · Feb 1999 · Pacing and Clinical Electrophysiology
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    ABSTRACT: Automatic mode switching (AMS) prevents tracking of paroxysmal atrial fibrillation (AF) in dual chamber pacing. The correct detection of AF can be affected by the programmed atrial sensitivity (AS). We prospectively studied the relationship between AS, AF undersensing, and AMS, using unfiltered bipolar intracardiac atrial electrograms recorded from 17 patients during sinus rhythm (SR) and in AF. Overall, 780 rhythms were recorded and replayed onto three dual chamber pacemaker models using different AMS algorithms (Thera DR 7940, Marathon DDDR 294-09, and Meta DDDR 1254), and the ventricular responses were measured. AS was randomly programmed in steps from the highest available AS to half of the mean atrial P wave amplitude (PWA), and the percentage of appropriate AMS responses (defined as a ventricular pacing rate at the expected AMS mode) were recorded. AMS efficacy was related to the programmed AS settings in an exponential manner. At low AS settings, a higher percentage of tests were associated with absence of, or with intermittent AMS and tracking of AF, whereas at higher AS, oversensing of noise during SR occurred. An optimal AS measured approximately 1.3 mV, representing about one-third of the PWA measured during SR, although oversensing of SR and undersensing of AF continued to occur in 14% of tests and time, respectively, due to the high variation in PWA during AF. Thus, a fixed AS cannot eliminate AF undersensing without inviting noise oversensing, suggesting the need for automatic adjustments of AS, or the use of a rate-limiting algorithm to prevent rate oscillation during intermittent AF sensing. In conclusion, AMS functions of existing pacemakers were significantly limited by the undersensing of AF and oversensing of noise. Proper adjustment of the AS is important to enable effective AMS during AF.
    No preview · Article · Dec 1998 · Pacing and Clinical Electrophysiology
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    ABSTRACT: The use of combined sensors and advanced algorithms using different principles can improve rate performance over a single sensor system. Combinations of sensors and more sophisticated algorithms, however, invariably increase the complexity of pacemaker programming. An automatically optimized combined minute ventilation and activity DDDR pacemaker was developed to minimize repeated sensor adjustment. The device used subthreshold (below cardiac stimulation threshold) lead impedance to detect lead configuration at implantation automatically, followed by "implant management," including setting of lead polarity and initiation of DDDR pacing. Automatic sensor adaptation was achieved by programming a "target rate histogram" based on the patient's activity level and frequency of exertion, and the rate profile optimization process matched the recorded integrated sensor response to the target rate histogram profile. In nine patients implanted with the DX2 pacemakers, the implant management gave 100% accuracy in the detection of lead polarity. Rate profile optimization automatically increased the pacing rate during exercise between discharge and 3-month follow-up (hall walk: 78 +/- 3 vs 98 +/- 3 beats/min, and maximal treadmill exercise: 89 +/- 6 vs 115 +/- 5 beats/min, P < 0.001) with a significant increase in exercise duration during maximal exercise (7.18 +/- 1 min vs 9.56 +/- 2 min, P = 0.05). The accuracy of rate profile optimization versus manual programming was assessed at 1 month, and there was no significant difference between pacing rate kinetics and maximal pacing rate between the two methods of programming. In conclusion, pacemaker automaticity can be initiated at implantation and the self-optimized rate adaptive response appeared to be comparable to that derived from a manual programming procedure, which may reduce the need to perform time consuming sensor programming.
    No preview · Article · Sep 1998 · Pacing and Clinical Electrophysiology
  • H F Tse · C P Lau · S K Leung
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    ABSTRACT: Long-term atrial pacing with overlapping biphasic impulse stimulation using floating atrial electrodes is limited in its use by the high rate of intermittent failure to capture the atrium and by the occurrence of diaphragmatic stimulation in ambulatory patients.
    No preview · Article · Mar 1998 · The American Journal of Cardiology
  • SUM‐KIN LEUNG · CHU‐PAK LAU · MAN‐OI TANG
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    ABSTRACT: Although multisensor pacing may compensate the inadequacy of rate adaptation in a single sensor system, the clinical role of multisensor driven rate adaptive pacing remains unclear. We compared the performance between single sensor and dual sensor driven pacemakers using exercise cardiac output (CO) as a marker of cardiac performance. Eight patients with a mean age of 63 +/- 3 years implanted with a dual sensor pacemaker driven by combined activity (ACT) and QT interval sensors were studied in the ACT-, QT- only and the dual QT + ACT-VVIR modes. Patients performed submaximal and maximal exercise tests with CO assessed by carbon dioxide rebreathing method. Comparing the HR response based on the change in metabolic workload, the ACT-VVIR "overpaced," the QT-VVIR "underpaced," and the QT + ACT-VVIR achieved the best approximation to normal. The percentages of CO increase in ACT-VVIR and QT + ACT-VVIR modes over resting CO were higher at 1 minute of exercise (295 +/- 85% and 165 +/- 49%, respectively) compared to the QT-VVIR mode (81 +/- 40%, P < or = 0.05). During exercise, stroke volume changes from baseline were similar between ACT-VVIR and QT + ACT-VVIR modes, but a compensatory increase in stroke volume occurred in the QT-VVIR mode during submaximal exercise (50 +/- 11 mL vs 24 +/- 17 mL in the QT + ACT-VVIR and 14 +/- 4 in ACT-VVIR, P < or = 0.003). There was no difference in the maximal exercise workload, exercise duration and CO at the submaximal and maximal exercise between the 3 sensor modes. Thus, exercise capacity is a poor indicator of sensor performance while CO measurement is a sensitive indicator of sensor mode differences especially at low workload exercise. The ACT-VVIR gave the fastest increase in CO at start of exercise at the expanse of overpacing, whereas the "under-paced" QT-VVIR compensated for the slower rate increase by utilizing contractility reserve during submaximal exercise. Dual sensor pacing, by achieving the best heart rate to workload relationship, provided a CO response without overpacing or using contractility reserve during exercise.
    No preview · Article · Jan 1998 · Pacing and Clinical Electrophysiology
  • CHU‐PAK LAU · SUM‐KIN LEUNG · Iris Siu-Fong Lee
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    ABSTRACT: Floating P wave sensing can be derived from bipolar atrial electrodes with different electrode configurations, although the relative clinical efficacy of these methods of atrial sensing has not been studied. We evaluated 32 sex and age matched patients with advanced AV block who received AV synchronous pacers using either a single lead with diagonally arranged bipole (Unity VDDR, Model 292, Intermedics Inc.) or closely spaced bipolar complete ring electrodes (Thera VDD, Model 8948, Medtronic Inc.). The total surface area of the atrial electrodes were 17.2 and 25 mm2, and the highest programmable atrial sensitivities were 0.1 and 0.25 mV, respectively. Atrial electrogram amplitude and sensing threshold were evaluated at implant and at each follow-up clinic visit (1, 3, and 6 months). Stability of atrial sensing was assessed during physical maneuvers, treadmill exercise test, and Holter recording. Atrial electrogram amplitude at implantation was higher in the Thera VVD (2.08 +/- 0.79 vs 1.45 +/- 0.59 mV in Unity VDDR; P < 0.05), but the value of atrial sensing threshold was lower during follow-up than Unity VDDR. P wave undersensing was additionally observed with both pacemakers during physical maneuvers and exercise testing (6%-19% of patients). Two and four patients had atrial undersensing on Holter in the Unity VDDR and Thera VDD, respectively, and the percentage P wave undersensing were 0.88% +/- 2.41% versus 3.63% +/- 8.16%, respectively. Reprogramming of the atrial sensitivity in the Unity VDDR and the use of investigational software allowing 0.18 mV atrial sensitivity to be programmed in the Thera VDD substantially reduced the percentage of P wave undersensing on Holter to 0.46% +/- 1.67% and 0.10% +/- 0.24%, respectively. Beginning at discharge with a programmed atrial sensitivity level at least twice the sensing margin, the mean atrial sensitivity level was reprogrammed from 0.29 to 0.26 mV for Unity VDDR and 0.33 to 0.24 mV for Thera VDD at 6 months. There was no incidence of atrial oversensing. Despite differences in atrial amplitudes at implantation between the diagonally arranged bipole and closely spaced full ring single lead systems, the clinical performances of atrial sensing were similar at an appropriately high atrial sensitivities. The absence of atrial oversensing suggests that single pass VDD pacemakers should probably be programmed at the highest available atrial sensitivity to ensure adequate P wave sensing as guided by physical maneuvers and Holter recording to minimize the need of subsequent reprogramming.
    No preview · Article · Nov 1996 · Pacing and Clinical Electrophysiology
  • SUM‐KIN LEUNG · CHU‐PAK LAU · MAN‐OI TANG · Zoe Leung
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    ABSTRACT: A dual sensor DDDR pacemaker (DX2 Model 7970, Medtronic Inc.) has integrated the rate response of minute ventilation (MV) and activity (ACT) sensors. False rate acceleration by the ACT (constrained upper rate) and MV (cross-checked by ACT) is reduced. We examined the rate response profile and rate kinetics of the automatically optimized integrated sensor by comparing with the projected rate response of ACT and MV sensors alone in nine patients. After 1 month of sensor optimization using rate profile optimization (RPO), patients underwent maximal and submaximal treadmill exercises and performed activities of daily living (ADL). The integrated sensor mode gave a faster speed of rate response with a shorter delay time, time to 50% rate response and time to 90% of rate response compared to the MV sensor during hall walk (0.37 +/- 0.08, 0.7 +/- 0.09, 1.43 +/- 0.19 vs 1.11 +/- 0.1, 1.75 +/- 0.14, 2.91 +/- 0.17 min; P < 0.05). The average maximal sensor rates were significantly more proportional for the integrated sensor mode compared with either the ACT or MV mode. There was no significant difference in both the maximal pacing rate among the three sensor modes during maximal exercise and the rate decay during recovery. During interference studies by arm swinging (30-40 swings/min) and external tapping of the pacemakers (2 taps/s), there was only a moderate increase in pacing rate by 13 +/- 9, 16 +/- 5 beats/min. Hence, the new integrated sensor with the automatic rate profile optimization algorithm resulted in improved rate response profiles during submaximal exercise and ADL compared to the individual sensor response, and the sensor blending and cross-checking algorithm made the pacemaker relatively immune to false triggering of both the ACT and MV sensors.
    No preview · Article · Nov 1996 · Pacing and Clinical Electrophysiology
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    ABSTRACT: Background and hypothesis: Occasional reports have suggested that cellular phones may interfere with permanent pacemakers. Our investigation sought to determine systematically the effects of commercially available cellular phones on the performances of different pacing modes and sensing lead configurations of permanent implanted pacemakers.Methods: We conducted the study in 29 patients implanted with single- or dual-chamber bipolar rate-adaptive permanent pacemakers (a total of nine different models and six different sensors: minute ventilation, activity sensing using either accelerometer or piezoelectric crystal, QT and oxygen saturation sensing) from four different manufacturers. Three different cellular phones with analog or digital coding with maximum power from 0.6 to 2 W were used to assess the effect of pacemaker interference. Each cellular phone was positioned at (1) above the pacemaker pocket, (2) the ear level ipsilateral to the pacemaker pocket, and (3) the contralateral ear level. Surface electrocardiograms, intracardiac electrograms, and marker channels were recorded where possible during the following maneuvers at each position: (1) calls made by a stationary phone to a cellular phone, and (2) calls made from the cellular phone to a stationary phone. A total of eight different pacing modes [DDD(R), VDD(R), AAI(R) and VVI(R)] in both unipolar and bipolar sensing configurations was tested.Results: Interference was demonstrated during cellular phone operation in 74 of 2,418 (3.1%) episodes in eight patients. Three types of interference were observed: inhibition of pacing output, rapid ventricular tracking in DDD(R) or VDD(R) mode, and asynchronous pacing. All were observed only with the cellular phone positioned above the pacemaker pocket. Interference occurred prior to and after the termination of the ringing tone of the cellular phone in 57% of cases. Cellular phones with either digital or analog technology could cause interference. Unipolar atrial lead was most susceptible to interference (relative frequency of interference: unipolar 1.8%, bipolar 0.4%, p<0.05;atrial 2.9%, ventricular 1 %, p <0.05). There was no sensor-driven rate acceleration during all tests. In all patients, reprogramming of the sensitivity level successfully prevented cellular phone interference.Conclusions: Commercially available cellular phones can cause reversible interference to implanted single- or dual-chamber permanent pacemakers. The effect is maximal with high atrial unipolar sensitivity, especially in single pass VDD(R) systems. Both digital and analog cellular phones can lead to interference. Pacemaker interference can occur prior to a warning sign (ringing tone) of the phone and may have significant implications in patient safety.
    Preview · Article · Nov 1996 · Clinical Cardiology
  • CHU‐PAK LAU · SUM‐KIN LEUNG · Modesto Guerola · H.j.g.m. Crijns
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    ABSTRACT: The normal sinus rhythm remains the gold standard to compare the rate response of a rate adaptive pacemaker. The aim of this study was to assess an automatically optimized dual sensor system by continuous comparison of the normal sinus (SR) and sensor indicated rates (SIR). Twelve patients with complete heart block (mean age 60 +/- 9 years) with normal sinus rhythm received a dual sensor pacemaker driven by combined, automatically adaptive activity and QT sensors. After 1 month of automatic adaptation, patients performed a treadmill exercise in the VDD mode with simultaneous collection of SR and combined SIR. Thereafter the difference between SR and SIR was recorded over a 1-month period using a software downloaded into the pacemakers, with the patients ambulatory during this period. During exercise testing, the SR and SIR were significantly correlated (r = 0.96 +/- 0.02, P < 0.001), and the mean difference between SR and SIR was 4.01 +/- 4.47 beats/min. The percentages of paced beats, over the 1 month ambulatory period, that exhibited a difference between SR and SIR of 8 beats/min were 98% +/- 2%, 90% +/- 4% and 67% +/- 8% for low, medium, and high workloads, respectively (P < 0.05, ANOVA), whereas > 95% of SIR were within 15 beats/min of SR independent of the level of activities. Thus, an automatically programmed dual sensor gives an accurate reflection of SR during exercise. SIR was less accurate for more vigorous daily life activities, but most of the SIR were within the normal SR variation of 15 beats/min.
    No preview · Article · Nov 1996 · Pacing and Clinical Electrophysiology
  • HUNG‐FAT TSE · CHU‐PAK LAU · SUM‐KIN LEUNG · Zoe Leung · Nawzer Mehta
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    ABSTRACT: Single lead DDD pacing using unipolar or bipolar stimulation is limited by high atrial threshold. Overlapping biphasic (OLBI) waveform stimulation via atrial floating ring electrodes may preferentially enhance atrial pacing and avoid diaphragmatic pacing. Single lead DDD pacing with OLBI atrial pacing was studied in 12 patients (6 men and 6 women; mean age 74 +/- 7 years) with complete heart block. At implantation, atrial bipolar rings (area 27 mm2, separation 10 mm) were positioned at radiological defined high, mid, and low right atrial (RA) levels, and P wave amplitude and atrial and diaphragmatic pacing thresholds were determined in each position using unipolar, bipolar, and OLBI stimulation in random order. Although statistically insignificant, both the maximum and minimum sensed P wave amplitudes tended to be lower in the low RA position. Independent of the stimulation modes, minimum atrial pacing threshold occurred in the mid-RA. At mid-RA, the atrial pacing threshold was significantly lower with OLBI pacing compared with either unipolar or bipolar mode (3.9 +/- 2.2 V vs 6.7 +/- 3.5 V and 6.9 +/- 3.5 V, P < 0.05). Although the diaphragmatic thresholds were similar, OLBI pacing modes in the mid-RA and final location significantly improved the safety margin for avoidance of diaphragmatic pacing compared with unipolar mode. There was no correlation between atrial pacing and sensing threshold. At predischarge testing, all but one patient who developed atrial fibrillation had satisfactory atrial capture and a stable atrial pacing threshold (day 0: 2.6 +/- 1.1V vs day 2:3.2 +/- 1.3V, P = NS). However, diaphragmatic pacing occurred in four of 11 (36%) patients, especially in the upright position (sitting and standing). Our preliminary clinical results suggest that OLBI pacing via atrial floating ring electrodes can reduce the atrial pacing threshold. To optimize atrial pacing and sensing, the bipolar electrodes should be located at the mid-RA level first, although the high RA is an alternative. Despite significant improvements in the safety margin for diaphragmatic pacing with OLBI pacing, diaphragmatic stimulation remains a clinical problem.
    No preview · Article · Nov 1996 · Pacing and Clinical Electrophysiology