The morphologic features of the coronary vein system was prospectively studied with retrograde venography in 117 patients with left-sided (78 patients) and posteroseptal accessory pathway (39). Findings were compared with accessory pathway localization. A mean of 3.3 +/- 1.5 venous branches draining into the coronary sinus or the great cardiac vein could be visualized. The morphologic condition was described and classified. Incidence, morphologic condition, and distribution did not differ between left-sided and posteroseptal accessory pathway. Venous abnormalities including ectasy, diverticulum, narrowing, angulation, and hypoplasia occurred in 22.2%. Diverticulum and narrowing were present in posteroseptal accessory pathway only and always related to the successful ablation site. In patients with left-sided accessory pathway, ectasy, angulation, and hypoplasia were found. Anomalies were less frequent (9% vs 43.6%, p < 0.001) and had no relation to accessory pathway localization. However, the successful ablation site was in 42.3% located < 5 mm to an angiographically visualized venous branch. In conclusion, posteroseptal accessory pathways are often related to coronary sinus abnormalities. In patients with a left-sided accessory pathway venous malformation is uncommon, whereas a close anatomic relation exists between accessory pathway localization and venous ventricular branches.