Different responses to exercise between Andersen-Tawil syndrome and catecholaminergic polymorphic ventricular tachycardia

Europace. 2018 Oct 1;20(10):1675-1682. doi: 10.1093/europace/eux351.


Aims: Andersen-Tawil Syndrome (ATS) and catecholaminergic polymorphic ventricular tachycardia (CPVT) are both inherited arrhythmic disorders characterized by bidirectional ventricular tachycardia (VT). The aim of this study was to evaluate the diagnostic value of exercise stress tests for differentiating between ATS and CPVT.

Methods and results: We included 26 ATS patients with KCNJ2 mutations from 22 families and 25 CPVT patients with RyR2 mutations from 22 families. We compared the clinical and electrocardiographic (ECG) characteristics, responses of ventricular arrhythmias (VAs) to exercise testing, and the morphology of VAs between ATS and CPVT patients. Ventricular arrhythmias were more frequently observed at baseline in ATS patients compared with CPVT patients [the ratio of ventricular premature beats (VPBs)/sinus: 0.83 ± 1.87 vs. 0.06 ± 0.30, P = 0.01]. At peak exercise, VAs were suppressed in ATS patients, whereas they were increased in CPVT patients (0.14 ± 0.40 vs. 1.94 ± 2.71, P < 0.001). Twelve-lead ECG showed that all 25 VPBs and 15 (94%) of 16 bidirectional VTs were right bundle branch block (RBBB) morphology in ATS patients, whereas 19 (86%) of 22 VPBs had left bundle branch block (LBBB), and 12 (71%) of 17 bidirectional VT had LBBB and RBBB morphologies in CPVT patients.

Conclusion: In patients with ATS, VAs with RBBB morphology were frequently observed at baseline and suppressed at peak exercise. In contrast, exercise provoked VAs with mainly LBBB morphology in patients with CPVT. In adjunct to clinical and baseline ECG assessments, exercise testing might be useful for making the diagnosis of ATS vs. CPVT, both characterized by bidirectional VT.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Andersen Syndrome / genetics
  • Andersen Syndrome / physiopathology*
  • Bundle-Branch Block / physiopathology*
  • Child
  • Electrocardiography
  • Exercise Test
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mutation
  • Potassium Channels, Inwardly Rectifying / genetics
  • Ryanodine Receptor Calcium Release Channel / genetics
  • Tachycardia / physiopathology*
  • Tachycardia, Ventricular / genetics
  • Tachycardia, Ventricular / physiopathology*
  • Ventricular Premature Complexes / physiopathology*
  • Young Adult


  • KCNJ2 protein, human
  • Potassium Channels, Inwardly Rectifying
  • RyR2 protein, human
  • Ryanodine Receptor Calcium Release Channel

Supplementary concepts

  • Bidirectional tachycardia
  • Polymorphic catecholergic ventricular tachycardia