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Definition of «Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome»

Wolff-Parkinson-White syndromeWolff-Parkinson-White syndromeWolff-Parkinson-White syndromeWolff-Parkinson-White syndrome

Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome: A condition caused by an abnormality in the electrical system of the heart which normally tells the heart muscle when to contract. In Wolff-Parkinson-White (WPW) syndrome, there is an extra electrical connection inside the heart that acts as a short circuit, causing the heart to beat too rapidly and sometimes in an irregular manner. The syndrome can be lifethreatening although this is unusual.

WPW can be treated by destroying the short circuit using a technique termed radiofrequency catheter ablation in which wires are placed in different places in the heart until the short circuit is found and can be destroyed with radiowaves.

WPW involves preexcitation. Part of the venetricle receives premature electrical stimulation due to the presence of an accessory pathway (the short circuit) which is not subject to the normal delay at the atrioventricular node.

Wolff-Parkinson-White is written with hyphens because the syndrome was not discovered by a Dr. Wolff Parkinson White but by three doctors: Louis Wolff, Sir John Parkinson, and Paul Dudley White.

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