Value of Cardiac Magnetic Resonance Imaging in Patients with Failed Ablation Procedures for Ventricular Tachycardia

Mario Njeim, Miki Yokokawa, Luba Frank, Thomas Crawford, Eric Good, Fred Morady, Frank Bogun

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


VT and MRI Background Ventricular tachycardia (VT) in patients with cardiomyopathy originates in scar tissue. Intramural or epicardial scar may result in ineffective ablation if mapping and ablation are limited to the endocardium. The purpose of this study was to investigate whether preprocedural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is beneficial in patients with failed endocardial VT ablations in determining an appropriate ablation strategy. Methods and Results A cardiac MRI was performed in 20 patients with a failed ablation procedure and cardiomyopathy (nonischemic n = 12, ischemic n = 8). A subsequent ablation strategy was determined by a delayed enhanced MRI (DE-MRI) and an epicardial subxyphoid access was planned only in patients with epicardial or intramural free-wall scar. MRIs were performed in all patients with or without an implanted cardioverter defibrillator (ICD). The location of scar tissue in the MRI predicted the origin of VT in all patients. In 9/20 patients an epicardial procedure was performed based on the result of the MRI. An endocardial procedure was performed in the remaining 11 patients who had either endocardial or septal scarring and one patient in whom the MRI only showed artifact. Five patients remained inducible postablation and four patients had VT recurrence within a follow-up period of 17 ± 22 months. All of the latter patients had an intramural scar pattern. Conclusions Imaging with DE-MRI prior to VT ablation in patients with previously failed endocardial ablation procedures is beneficial in identifying an ablation strategy, helps to focus on an area of interest intraprocedurally, and provides valuable outcomes information.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)183-189
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Cardiovascular Electrophysiology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • cardiac MRI
  • catheter ablation
  • ischemic cardiomyopathy
  • nonischemic cardiomyopathy
  • ventricular tachycardia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)


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