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Mortality benefit with AF ablation: Impact of normal sinus rhythm seen in CABANA and EAST AF Net
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  • Michael Crawford,
  • Benjamin Steinberg,
  • Ravi Ranjan,
  • Klitos Konstantinidis,
  • Leenhapong Navaravong,
  • Thomas Bunch
Michael Crawford
University of Utah School of Medicine
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Benjamin Steinberg
University of Utah
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Ravi Ranjan
University of Utah
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Klitos Konstantinidis
University of Utah School of Medicine
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Leenhapong Navaravong
Bangkok Heart Hospital
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Thomas Bunch
University of Utah School of Medicine

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

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Atrial fibrillation is significantly associated with morbidity and mortality and erodes the quality and quantity of life. It is standard of care to treat patients with AF and an increased risk of stroke with oral anticoagulation therapy, but the more daunting question many clinicians face is whether to pursue a “rate-only” or “rhythm” control strategy. Historical studies over the years have sought to answer this question but have found no significant difference in major clinical outcomes between the two strategies. There are opportunities based on new data to improve the natural history of the disease. The EAST AFnet trial for the first time revealed a significant morbidity and mortality advantage to rhythm control therapy when performed early in the disease process of AF and in the setting of comprehensive medical management that was maintained. The CABANA trial clearly demonstrated that catheter ablation was a more effective long-term treatment of AF in general and significantly lowers risk of AF progression compared to medical therapy. Like multiple prior trials of rhythm management strategies, when rhythm control was effective in these trials, independent of therapy assignment, there was a significantly lower risk of adverse outcomes and death. These contemporary data provide optimism that the pervasive mortality risk in patients with AF observed over the past 50 years may be improved by the timing, use, and efficacy of use of therapeutic interventions.
04 Sep 2023Reviewer(s) Assigned
02 Oct 2023Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
02 Oct 2023Editorial Decision: Revise Minor
01 Nov 20231st Revision Received
02 Nov 2023Assigned to Editor
02 Nov 2023Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
02 Nov 2023Submission Checks Completed
02 Nov 2023Reviewer(s) Assigned