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Clinical magnetocardiography. 10 years experience at the Catholic University.

  • Fenici, R R
  • Melillo, G
  • Masselli, M
Published Article
International journal of cardiac imaging
Publication Date
Jan 01, 1991
PMID: 1820397


Since the introduction, in 1982, of a Biomagnetic facility in the clinical environment, efforts were concentrated to investigate whether magnetocardiography could really provide new information of potential diagnostic use, even avoiding electromagnetic shielding to facilitate simultaneous biomagnetic and conventional cardiac investigations, including cardiac catheterization for invasive electrophysiological procedures. More than 350 patients have been magnetically investigated using a single-channel second-order gradiometer. Results of 281 MCG studies, whose data have been extensively analyzed with updated software programs, are reported. Magnetocardiographic (MCG) mapping during endocardial pacing was performed to quantify the accuracy of MCG localization of intracardiac dipolar sources. MCG classification of ventricular preexcitation has been attempted in 70 patients with overt preexcitation. MCG localization of the ventricular preexcited area was accurate and reproducible, provided that during mapping a sufficient degree of ventricular preexcitation was present. MCG mapping during orthodromic A-V re-entry tachycardia has been also employed to attempt the localization of retrograde atrial preexcitation as well as the site of origin of atrial and ventricular tachyarrhythmias. For validation, the results of catheter and epicardial mappings have been used. Other applications of clinical magnetocardiography are under evaluation. The use of the Relative smoothness index needs, in our opinion, a larger experience to define its reliability as a predictor of risk for sudden death. MCG follow-up study of patients with transplanted hearts seems to be a promising application, for early detection of acute graft rejection reaction. Our reported case strongly supports this potentiality. Present work is also addressed to develop an integrated system allowing easy MCG mapping during cardiac catheterization, as a new method to guide diagnostic and therapeutic procedures as close as possible to the arrhythmogenic substrate.


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