Warren Jackman, MD, FHRS

First RF Catheter Ablation

Warren (Sonny) Jackman, MD, FHRS

When catheter ablation was in its infancy, radiofrequency current was introduced to replace the riskier, high-energy shocks associated with direct current. However, progress was slow due to small lesions created by standard catheters.

Enter Warren Jackman, MD, FHRS, who, during his early work, developed techniques for recording accessory pathway activation potentials in patients with Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome. He made a small step that was, in fact, a giant leap — the use of the large tip electrode. He presented the first series of cures for atrioventricular reentrant tachycardia by RF catheter ablation. This curative treatment, based mainly on Jackman’s methods, is practiced routinely worldwide.

The first groups that pioneered the use of RF ablation for supraventricular tachycardias included Jackman, Fred Morady, MD, and Karl-Heinz Kuck, MD, FHRS. Jackman and his colleagues played a significant role in the development of RF ablation by using novel recording techniques to localize the substrate for ablation of typical accessory pathways, epicardial posteroseptal accessory pathways, Mahaim fibers, slow AV nodal pathways (multiple variants of AVNRT), Idiopathic LV Tachycardia (Purkinje potentials) and Post-MI VT (mid-diastolic potentials).

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