Upgrade of cardiac resynchronization therapy by utilizing additional His-bundle pacing in patients with inotrope-dependent end-stage heart failure: a case series

Eur Heart J Case Rep. 2020 Nov 12;4(6):1-9. doi: 10.1093/ehjcr/ytaa303. eCollection 2020 Dec.


Background: His-bundle pacing (HBP) alone may become an alternative to conventional cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) utilizing right ventricular apical (RVA) and left ventricular (LV) pacing (BiVRVA+LV) in selected patients, but the effects of CRT utilizing HBP and LV pacing (BiVHB+LV) on cardiac resynchronization and heart failure (HF) are unclear.

Case summary: We presented two patients with inotrope-dependent end-stage HF in whom the upgrade from conventional BiVRVA+LV to BiVHB+LV pacing by the addition of a lead for HBP improved their HF status. Patient 1 was a 32-year-old man with lamin A/C cardiomyopathy, atrial fibrillation, and complete atrioventricular (AV) block. Patient 2 was a 70-year-old man with ischaemic cardiomyopathy complicated by AV block and worsening of HF resulting from ablation for ventricular tachycardia storm. The HF status of both patients improved dramatically following the upgrade from BiVRVA+LV to BiVHB+LV pacing.

Discussion: End-stage HF patients suffer from diffuse intraventricular conduction defect not only in the LV but also in the right ventricle (RV). The resulting dyssynchrony may not be sufficiently corrected by conventional BiVRVA+LV pacing or HBP alone. Right ventricular apical pacing itself may also impair RV synchrony. An upgrade to BiVHB+LV pacing could be beneficial in patients who become non-responsive to conventional BiV pacing as the His-Purkinje conduction defect progresses.

Keywords: Cardiac resynchronization therapy; Case report; End-stage; Heart failure; His-bundle pacing; Intraventricular conduction defect.