Analysis: AFib Catheter Ablation Improves Cognitive Function

This one-year case-control study was conducted to assess changes in cognitive function in a group of patients who underwent ablation for atrial fibrillation (AFib). The study included 308 participants who underwent ablation for AFib and in 50 patients meeting the same indication for AFib ablation. The researchers evaluated the Montreal Cognitive Assessment score in at baseline, three, and 12 months, with cognitive impairment defined as a published cutoff score of <23 points. The researchers reported improvement in Montreal Cognitive Assessment score after one year following radiofrequency ablation, both overall and in the propensity-matched ablation group. Pre-ablation impairment was associated with improved one-year post-ablation cognitive function. “Catheter ablation of AF, at least, does not deteriorate the cognitive function, but rather improves the performance on one-year follow-up neurocognitive tests, especially in patients with a pre-ablation cognitive impairment,” the authors wrote.

Jin MN, et al. Circ Arrhythm Electrophysiol. 2019;doi:10.1161/CIRCEP.119.007197