Role of intracardiac ultrasound in interventional electrophysiology

Curr Opin Cardiol. 2004 Jan;19(1):52-7. doi: 10.1097/00001573-200401000-00011.


Purpose of review: Interventional procedures in the electrophysiology and catheterization laboratory are rapidly advancing. Critical to the advancement of these procedures is accurate identification of critical anatomic landmarks and catheter position. Fluoroscopy remains the mainstay for general identification of anatomic landmarks but is inadequate for the precise imaging needed for complex procedures. Precise imaging of anatomic landmarks and catheter position is now possible during the procedure with the use of intracardiac echocardiography (ICE). This paper reviews the rapid development and utilization of ICE in interventional electrophysiology.

Recent findings: Several recent studies show ICE as a major contribution to providing a safer, more reliable, and more cost-effective means of accomplishing the tasks performed by existing techniques. In the electrophysiology laboratory, the dependence on this new technology has been due to the rapid development of catheter-based radiofrequency ablation of the pulmonary veins for treatment of atrial fibrillation. Since the initial use of ICE in facilitating ablation of atrial fibrillation, other uses for ICE are continuously being identified.

Summary: A comprehensive look is provided at the history and development of this new technology along with the most recent applications of ICE in interventional electrophysiology.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Atrial Fibrillation / surgery
  • Cardiac Catheterization
  • Catheter Ablation / methods
  • Echocardiography / methods*
  • Electrophysiologic Techniques, Cardiac / methods*
  • Humans
  • Pulmonary Veins / surgery
  • Ultrasonography, Interventional*