Detailed analysis of ventricular activation sequences during right ventricular apical pacing and left bundle branch block and the potential implications for cardiac resynchronization therapy

Romain Eschalier, Sylvain Ploux*, Joost Lumens, Zachary Whinnett, Niraj Varma, Valentin Meillet, Philippe Ritter, Pierre Jais, Michel Haissaguerre, Pierre Bordachar

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


BACKGROUND Left bundle branch block (LBBB) leads to prolonged left ventricular (LV) total activation time (TAT) and ventricular electrical uncoupling (VEU; mean LV activation time minus mean right ventricular [RV] activation time); both have been shown to be preferential targets for cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT). Whether right ventricular apical pacing (RVAP) produces similar ventricular activation patterns has not been well studied. OBJECTIVE The purpose of this study was to compare electrical ventricular activation patterns during RVAP and LBBB. METHODS We performed ECG mapping during sinus rhythm, RVAP, and CRT in 24 patients with LBBB. RESULTS We observed differences in the electrical activation pattern with RVAP compared to LBBB. During LBBB, RV activation occurred rapidly; in contrast, RV activation was prolonged during RVAP (46 +/- 21 ms vs 69 +/- 17 ms, P <.001). There was no significant difference in LVTAT; however, differences in conduction pattern were observed. During LBBB, LV activation was circumferential, whereas with RVAP, LV activation proceeded from apex to base. Differences in the number, size, and orientation of lines of stow conduction also were observed. With LBBB, VEU was nearly twice as long as during RVAP (73 +/- 12 ms vs 38 +/- 21 ms, P <.001). CRT resulted in a greater reduction in VEU relative to LBBB activation (P <.001). CONCLUSION RVAP produces significant differences in ventricular activation characteristics compared to LBBB. Significantly less VEU occurs with RVAP, and as a result CRT produces a smaller relative reduction in VEU. This may explain the finding that CRT appears to be more effective in patients with LBBB than in those who were upgraded because of high percentages of RV pacing.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)137-143
JournalHeart Rhythm
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2015


  • Cardiac resynchronization therapy
  • Electrocardiography
  • Electrical dyssynchrony
  • Ventricular mapping
  • Left bundle branch block

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