Late outcomes after the Cox maze IV procedure for atrial fibrillation

Matthew C. Henn, Timothy S. Lancaster, Jacob R. Miller, Laurie A. Sinn, Richard B. Schuessler, Marc R. Moon, Spencer J. Melby, Hersh S. Maniar, Ralph J. Damiano

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93 Scopus citations


Objective The Cox maze IV procedure (CMPIV) has been established as the gold standard for surgical ablation; however, late outcomes using current consensus definitions of treatment failure have not been well described. To compare to reported outcomes of catheter-based ablation, we report our institutional outcomes of patients who underwent a left-sided or biatrial CMPIV at 5 years of follow-up. Methods Between January 2002 and September 2014, data were collected prospectively on 576 patients with AF who underwent a CMPIV (n = 532) or left-sided CMPIV (n = 44). Perioperative variables and long-term freedom from AF, with and without AADs, were compared in multiple subgroups. Results Follow-up at any time point was 89%. At 5 years, overall freedom from AF was 93 of 119 (78%), and freedom from AF off AADs was 77 of 177 (66%). No differences were found in freedom from AF, with or without AADs, at 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 years for patients with paroxysmal AF (n = 204) versus with persistent/longstanding persistent AF (n = 305), or for those who underwent standalone versus a concomitant CMP. Duration of preoperative AF and hospital length of stay were the best predictors of failure at 5 years. Conclusions The outcomes of the CMPIV remain good at late follow-up. The type of preoperative AF or the addition of a concomitant procedure did not affect late success. The results of the CMPIV remain superior to those reported for catheter ablation and other forms of surgical AF ablation, especially for patients with persistent or longstanding AF.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1168-1178.e2
JournalJournal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 2015


  • ablation
  • arrhythmia therapy
  • atrial fibrillation


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