Alcohol septal ablation for hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy: a systematic review of published studies

J Interv Cardiol. 2006 Aug;19(4):319-27. doi: 10.1111/j.1540-8183.2006.00153.x.


Objective: Alcohol septal ablation (ASA) for hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy (HOCM) has emerged as a lesser invasive alternative to surgical myectomy over the past decade. The purpose of this study is to analyze all the published literature on outcomes and complications after ASA.

Methods: MEDLINE and PubMed were searched for all available published literature on ASA (June 1996-June 2005) using the terms hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy (HOCM), alcohol septal ablation for hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy, alcohol septal ablation for HOCM, alcohol septal ablation (ASA), transcoronary alcohol septal ablation for hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy (TASH), transcoronary alcohol septal ablation for HOCM, nonsurgical septal reduction therapy (NSRT), and percutaneous transcoronary septal myocardial ablation (PTSMA).

Results: A total of 42 published studies (2,959 patients) were analyzed. Mean age was 53.5 (35.4-72) years with a mean male to female ratio of 1.17. Mean follow-up was 12.7 +/- 0.3 months (1.5-43.2). Absolute ethanol (3 mL) was injected in 1.2 septal perforator arteries. On average, serum CK peaked at 964 units. At 12 months, there was a sustained decrease in resting and provoked LVOT gradient (65.3-15.8 and 125.4-31.5 mmHg, respectively) accompanied by reduction in basal septal diameter (20.9-13.9 mm), improvement in NYHA Class (2.9-1.2), and increase in exercise capacity (325.3-437.5 seconds). Early mortality (within 30 days) was 1.5% (0.0-5.0%) and late mortality (beyond 30 days) was 0.5% (0.0-9.3%). Other complications include ventricular fibrillation (2.2%), LAD dissection (1.8%), complete heart block requiring permanent pacemaker (10.5%), and pericardial effusion (0.6%). A repeat ASA was performed on 6.6% of patients and 1.9% of patients underwent surgical myomectomy with resolution of symptoms.

Conclusions: Literature to date suggests that ASA results in acute and intermediate-term favorable clinical and echocardiographic outcomes. A randomized controlled trial is needed to compare ASA and myomectomy in order to determine which technique provides maximal benefit.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Cardiomyopathy, Hypertrophic / blood
  • Cardiomyopathy, Hypertrophic / diagnostic imaging
  • Cardiomyopathy, Hypertrophic / mortality
  • Cardiomyopathy, Hypertrophic / physiopathology
  • Cardiomyopathy, Hypertrophic / surgery*
  • Catheter Ablation / adverse effects
  • Catheter Ablation / methods*
  • Ethanol / therapeutic use*
  • Female
  • Heart Septum / drug effects*
  • Heart Septum / surgery*
  • Heart Ventricles / drug effects
  • Heart Ventricles / surgery
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Ultrasonography


  • Ethanol