When Is a “Pathway” Not a Pathway?
Explaining Late Recurrences After Successful Ablation of Pediatric Atrioventricular Nodal Reentrant Tachycardia
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What sense would it make or what would it benefit a physician if he discovered the origin of the diseases but could not cure or alleviate them?
Physician and alchemist Philippus Aureolus Theophrastus Bombastus von Hohenheim was born in Switzerland one year after Columbus set out for, and discovered, the New World. The son of a physician, he adopted the nom de plume Paracelsus on completion of his own medical doctorate to imply that he was at least the equal of past great physicians, such as Galen and Celsus, and is credited as the founder of the field of toxicology.1 Paracelsus rejected Galen’s theory of the four humours and advocated for the application of the scientific method to medicine, as well as the importance of the sciences in medical education.
See Article by Backhoff et al
Atrioventricular nodal reentrant tachycardia (AVNRT) is a common arrhythmia that may be successfully treated with catheter ablation; yet, the precise anatomic structures that constitute the reentrant circuit have remained the subject of study and discussion over several decades.2–4 In contrast to the Paracelsian admonition above, modern electrophysiologists have learned to cure AVNRT, despite not yet fully discovering its origin.
In the current issue of Circulation: Arrhythmia and Electrophysiology, Backhoff et al5 present data on the long-term outcome of catheter ablation of AVNRT in children. Their principal finding was that notwithstanding high rates of …