Biomedical Science & Research Journals | Reentry and Rotors

Two interesting papers [1,2] appeared recently discussing the important question of a rotor (spiral) induced by a reentry mechanism and its influence on heart failures. One of the main malfunctions of the heart is tachycardia [3,4], rapid heartbeat, either in the atria termed AT or in the ventricles (VT). Tachycardia can lead to fibrillation [5]. (AF or VF respectively), i.e. rather chaotic heart-waves. It is known that patients suffering from fibrosis are more prone to contract such fibrillary condition, which can lead even to sudden cardiac death (SCD). 

These activities are thought by most authors to be sustained by a small number of self-organized, rapidly spinning electrical rotors [6]. The importance of locating the rotor centers for ablation purposes in AF patients was shown [7] to be of real benefit in this treatment. The rotor itself can be due to a “reentry” [8], i.e. a mechanism where an action potential (AP) pulse is repeatedly oscillating around a specific route of cardiomyocytes. Actually, the term “reentry” is used in the literature both in the above restricted meaning and also to refer to the overall occurrence moving around a center such as the rotor.


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