Potential fields on the ventricular surface of the exposed dog heart during normal excitation.
We studied the normal spread of excitation on the anterior and posterior ventricular surface of open-chest dogs by recording unipolar electrograms from an array of 1124 electrodes spaced 2 mm apart. The array had the shape of the ventricular surface of the heart. The electrograms were processed by a computer and displayed as epicardial equipotential maps at 1-msec intervals. Isochrone maps also were drawn. Several new features of epicardial potential fields were identified: (1) a high number of breakthrough points; (2) the topography, apparent widths, velocities of the wavefronts and the related potential drop; (3) the topography of positive potential peaks in relation to the wavefronts. Fifteen to 24 breakthrough points were located on the anterior, and 10 to 13 on the posterior ventricular surface. Some were in previously described locations and many others in new locations. Specifically, 3 to 5 breakthrough points appeared close to the atrioventricular groove on the anterior right ventricle and 2 to 4 on the posterior heart aspect; these basal breakthrough points appeared when a large portion of ventricular surface was still unexcited. Due to the presence of numerous breakthrough points on the anterior and posterior aspect of the heart which had not previously been described, the spread of excitation on the ventricular surface was "mosaic-like," with activation wavefronts spreading in all directions, rather than radially from the two breakthrough points, as traditionally described. The positive potential peaks which lay ahead of the expanding wavefronts moved along preferential directions which were probably related to the myocardial fiber direction.
- Copyright © 1983 by American Heart Association