Section 11
Chapter 10,525

Effect of gender on atrial electrophysiologic changes induced by rapid atrial pacing and elevation of atrial pressure

Tse, H.F.; Oral, H.; Pelosi, F.; Knight, B.P.; Strickberger, S.A.; Morady, F.

Journal of Cardiovascular Electrophysiology 12(9): 986-989


ISSN/ISBN: 1045-3873
PMID: 11573707
DOI: 10.1046/j.1540-8167.2001.00986.x
Accession: 010524369

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Introduction: The incidence of atrial fibrillation is greater in men than in women, but the reasons for this gender difference are unclear. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of gender on the atrial electrophysiologic effects of rapid atrial pacing and an increase in atrial pressure. Methods and Results: Right atrial pressure and effective refractory period (ERP) were measured during sinus rhythm and during atrial and simultaneous AV pacing at a cycle length of 300 msec in 10 premenopausal women, 11 postmenopausal women, and 24 men. The postmenopausal women were significantly older than the premenopausal women (61+-8 years vs 34+-10 years; P<0.01). During sinus rhythm, mean atrial ERP in premenopausal women was shorter (211+-19 msec) than in postmenopausal women and age-matched men (242+-18 msec and 246+-34 msec, respectively; P<0.05). Atrial ERPs in all patients shortened significantly during atrial and simultaneous AV pacing. However, the degree of shortening during atrial pacing (43+-8 msec vs 70+-20 msec and 74+-21 msec; P<0.05) and during simultaneous AV pacing (48+-16 msec vs 91+-27 msec and 84+-26 msec; P<0.05) was significantly less in premenopausal women than in postmenopausal women or age-matched men. Conclusion: The results of this study demonstrate a significant gender difference in atrial electrophysiologic changes in response to rapid atrial pacing and an increase in atrial pressure. The effect of menopause on the observed changes suggests that the gender differences may be mediated by the effects of estrogen on atrial electrophysiologic properties.

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