Ten-year trends in the use of catheter ablation for treatment of atrial fibrillation vs. the use of coronary intervention for the treatment of ischaemic heart disease in Australia

Saurabh Kumar, Tomos E. Walters, Karen Halloran, Joseph B. Morton, Graham Hepworth, Christopher X. Wong, Peter M. Kistler, Prashanthan Sanders, Jonathan M. Kalman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Citations (Scopus)


AimsPercutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) and catheter ablation are well-accepted therapeutic interventions for treatment of coronary artery disease and atrial fibrillation (AF), respectively. We sought to examine temporal trends in the provision of these services over the past decade in Australia.Methods and resultsA retrospective review of the numbers of PCIs and AF ablations from 2000/01 to 2009/10 was performed on data from three sources: the Australian Institute of Health, Welfare and Aging (AIHW), Medicare Australia database (MA), and local records at a high volume tertiary referral centre (RMH) for AF ablation. Linear regression models were fitted comparing trends in population-adjusted procedural numbers over the 10-year period. There was a 5% per year population-adjusted increment in PCIs over 10 years from both the AIHW and MA sources, respectively (P < 0.001). This was similar to the growth rate of all cardiovascular procedures (AIHW: 5.1 vs. 3.8%/year, P = 0.27). Atrial fibrillation ablations showed a 30.9, 23.2, and 39.8% per year population-adjusted increment over 10 years from the AIHW, MA, and RMH sources respectively (P < 0.001 for all). Growth of AF ablations was significantly higher than PCIs (P < 0.001 for AIHW and MA sources) and all cardiovascular procedures (AIHW: 30.9 vs. 3.8%/year, P < 0.001).ConclusionThe provision of catheter-based AF ablation services in Australia has increased exponentially over the past decade. Its annual growth rate exceeded that of PCIs and all cardiovascular procedures. Given the increasing epidemic of AF, these data have critical implications for public health policy assessing the adequacy of infrastructure, training, and funding for AF ablation services.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1702-1709
Number of pages8
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished or Issued - Dec 2013


  • Atrial fibrillation
  • Catheter ablation
  • Coronary artery disease
  • Ischaemic heart disease
  • Percutaneous coronary intervention

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)

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