Coronary vein defibrillator coil placement in patients with high defibrillation thresholds

Moisés Rodríguez-Mañero, Bahij Kreidieh, Sergio H. Ibarra-Cortez, Paulino Álvarez, Paul Schurmann, Amish Dave, Miguel Valderrábano

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Background: Elevated defibrillation threshold (DFT) occurs in 2%-6% of patients undergoing implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) implantation. Adding a defibrillation coil in the coronary sinus (CS) or its branches can result in substantial reductions in the mean DFT. However, data regarding acute success and long-term stability remain lacking. We report our experience with this bailout strategy. Methods: Patients with elevated DFT at implantation (safety margin at implantation <10 J) and those with failed ICD shocks for ventricular arrhythmias (VA) referred for high DFT underwent placement of an additional defibrillation coil in the CS. DFT testing was performed at the completion of the implantation procedure. External potentially reversible factors were excluded. High-output devices were systematically used. Results: Four patients with high DFT at implantation and two with several failed shock attempts underwent placement of a defibrillation coil in the CS. Mean age was 41.8 (23-78). They presented a mean LVEF of 21% (15-30), QRS-complex duration of 109.8 milliseconds (87-168), body surface area of 1.96 m2 (1.45-2.58), and a mean R wave of 16.3 mV (8-27). Defibrillation coil implantation in the CS (final shocking configuration of right ventricle as anode and left ventricle (LV) plus can as cathode) was associated with successful DFT testing in all. Three patients had a concomitant LV lead for biventricular pacing. During a mean follow-up of 54.67 months (10-118), two patients experienced successful ICD shocks for VA (one of them also presented inappropriate shocks because of the fast conducting atrial fibrillation). Conclusions: Positioning of a defibrillation coil in the CS can result in a substantial reduction in mean DFT and associates with optimal long-term stability.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)79-85
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Arrhythmia
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1 2019


  • coronary sinus coil
  • defibrillation thresholds
  • implantable cardioverter defibrillator
  • sudden cardiac death
  • ventricular arrhythmia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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