Objectives Frequent premature ventricular contractions (FPVCs) in a structurally normal heart generally are considered as a benign condition. However, whether FPVCs have an effect on the cardiac structure and function in those “seemingly-normal” patients is not known. This study is to evaluate whether radiofrequency ablation (RFA) has any effect on cardiac structure and function in patients with idiopathic FPVCs originating from the right-ventricular outflow tract (RVOT) and with a structurally normal heart.
Methods Sixty-eight patients with idiopathic RVOT FPVCs and normal heart structure and function, were enrolled in this study. Those patients were divided into three groups: RFA group, anti-arrhythmia medicine (AAM) group and control group (without any treatment).
Results The basic criteria, including age, gender and PVCs history, were comparable among the three groups, except in the control group which had lower FPVC rates. Patients were closely followed-up for six months. The PVC rate was significantly reduced in RFA and AAM groups, but had no significant change in the control group. Concurrent with the increase in the FPVC rate were significant cardiac structure changes. The right atrium, right ventricle, and left ventricle were reduced significantly in the RFA and the AAM groups, but no changes were found in the control group. Further comparisons between the RFA and the AAM groups showed a greater reduction in the cardiac cavities in the RFA group. There was also a tendency of improvement in the cardiac functions in both the RFA and the AAM groups. However, the differences did not attain statistical significance.
Conclusions RFA reduces the FPVC rate and cardiac cavities in patients with a structurally normal heart, which might indicate that RFA can reverse the cardiac remodeling even in the structurally normal heart.