We studied a new technique for creating long linear lesions in hearts using a custom-made linear probe. Radiofrequency (RF) energy applications using a 25-mm long stainless steel linear probe and a corresponding 500-kHz energy generator were tested, creating 90 lesions in isolated porcine hearts. The RF current was applied between the linear probe and a large patch electrode attached to the back of the specimen. Three parameters, comprising the power of the delivered energy, the pressure of contact between the probe and the specimen, and the duration of energy delivery were changed independently and the size of the resulting lesions was measured. All 90 lesions were transmural, well demarcated and created by a single stationary RF application. Lesion length and width increased with: 1) increasing power, when the other two parameters were maintained at constant levels, 2) increasing contact pressure, when the other two parameters were maintained at constant levels, and 3) increasing duration of energy delivery when the other two paramaters were maintained at constant levels. The maximum width of the lesions was 3.7 mm. No overheating of any of the specimens was observed. In conclusion, the new original long linear probe used in this study was effective for creating transmural linear lesions, presenting the possibility of a worthwhile contribution to the maze surgical procedure applied to atrial fibrillation.
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