Oesophageal injury during AF ablation: Techniques for prevention

Jorge Romero, Ricardo Avendano, Michael Grushko, Juan Carlos Diaz, Xianfeng Du, Carola Gianni, Andrea Natale, Luigi Di Biase

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Atrial fibrillation remains the most common arrhythmia worldwide, with pulmonary vein isolation (PVI) being an essential component in the treatment of this arrhythmia. In view of the close proximity of the oesophagus with the posterior wall of the left atrium, oesophageal injury prevention has become a major concern during PVI procedures. Oesophageal changes varying from erythema to fistulas have been reported, with atrio-oesophageal fistulas being the most feared as they are associated with major morbidity and mortality. This review article provides a detailed description of the risk factors associated with oesophageal injury during ablation, along with an overview of the currently available techniques to prevent oesophageal injury. We expect that this state of the art review will deliver the tools to help electrophysiologists prevent potential oesophageal injuries, as well as increase the focus on research areas in which evidence is lacking.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)24-31
Number of pages8
JournalArrhythmia and Electrophysiology Review
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1 2018


  • Ablation
  • Atrial fibrillation
  • Oesophageal injury
  • Pulmonary vein isolation
  • Transoesophageal echocardiogram

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)


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