Persistent left superior vena cava transvenous lead extraction: A European experience

J Cardiovasc Electrophysiol. 2022 Jan;33(1):102-108. doi: 10.1111/jce.15290. Epub 2021 Nov 22.


Background: Transvenous lead extraction (TLE) is rising in parallel to cardiac implantable electronic device implantations. Persistent left side superior vena cava (PLSVC) is a relatively common anatomical variant in the healthy population; TLE in patients with a PLSVC is rare.

Method: Data were collated from 6 European TLE institutes of 10 patients who had undergone lead extraction with a PLSVC. Patient demographics, procedural challenges and outcomes were reported.

Results: Ten patients aged 73.4 ± 7.8 years (60% male) underwent TLE of 20 leads (3 left ventricle, 10 right ventricle, 7 right atrium) with dwell time of 82.95 ± 39.1 months. Of the 10 cases, 4 had an infection indication and 5 were biventricular system extractions; 25% of the extracted leads were defibrillator leads. The majority of the procedures were completed in the cardiac catheterization suite (80%) under general anaesthesia (60%) by cardiologists (80%) using a rotational powered sheath (65%). The Tandem approach was used successfully in 3 cases. Complete procedural success was obtained in 100% of cases in the absence of complications within 127.4 ± 74.7 min. There was no 30-day mortality.

Conclusion: TLE in PLSVC is feasible albeit rare. Standard extraction techniques in experienced hands are associated with favorable outcomes; the Tandem procedure may be an additional technique to improve the safety and efficacy of TLE in PLSVC.

Keywords: cardiac implantable electronic devices; persistent left superior vena cava; transvenous lead extraction.

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