Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome

Common Name(s)

Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome, Wolff-Parkinson-White pattern, Ventricular familial preexcitation syndrome

Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome (WPW) is a rare condition where there is an extra electrical pathway in the heart. WPW can be caused by a gene mutation or it can be a form of congenital heart disease, most commonly an Ebstein's anomaly. The human heart has four chambers. The two upper chambers are called atria and the two lower chambers are called ventricles. A heart that beats normally receives an electrical signal that moves from the atria to the ventricles. In WPW, an extra electrical signal pathway acts like a shortcut so that the signal arrives too early to the ventricle, which may cause a very fast heartbeat (tachycardia). This event is also called paroxysmal supraventricular tachycardia (PVST). The extra electrical pathway is present at birth (congenital) but symptoms usually appear between the ages of 11 and 50. Some people with WPW never have any symptoms.

The symptoms of WPW are caused by the rapid heartbeat and may vary greatly in severity. Symptoms may include fluttering or pounding heartbeats (palpitations), dizziness, lightheadedness, fainting, and anxiety. Episodes of rapid heart rate, known to last anywhere from a few seconds to several hours, are often caused by exercise, caffeine, or alcohol. More serious symptoms include chest pain, chest tightness, difficulty breathing and in rare cases, cardiac arrest.

A diagnosis can be made by using blood tests, chest X-rays, or an electrocardiogram (where sensors are placed on your body to measure the electrical signals). Some people with WPW do not need treatment. Treatment may include using several body movements to help lower heart rate if an episode occurs. For those with more serious WPW, medications and a special heart therapy are available. Research is ongoing, so talk to your cardiologist (heart doctor) about the most current treatment options. Support groups are also a good source of information and can connect you with others living with heart arrhythmias.

Source: Advocacy organizations associated with the condition.

 

Advocacy and Support Organizations

 

Condition Specific Organizations

Following organizations serve the condition "Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome" for support, advocacy or research.

Kids with Heart National Association for Children's Heart Disorders

Our organization was formed in 1985 with the main mission of providing support, information, resources, and education for the families of the children living with congenital heart defects and to promote public awareness of the issues that these families live with on a day to day basis.

Last Updated: 4 May 2015

View Details
SADS (Sudden Arrhythmia Death Syndromes) Foundation

Our mission is to save the lives of young people who are genetically predisposed to sudden death due to cardiac arrhythmia and to provide education and support to families and the medical community.

Last Updated: 23 Apr 2015

View Details

 

General Support Organizations

Not finding the support you need? Show General Support Organizations

 
 
Top

How do you compare to others with this condition?

Privately answer questions about your health. Let resources, you select, come to you.

Anonymously share and see how your answers compare with others with this condition while privately providing key pieces of information to medical researchers, disease advocacy groups, and others ONLY YOU select to help speed up cures and better alternatives.

 
 

Advocacy and Support Organizations

 

Condition Specific Organizations

Following organizations serve the condition "Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome" for support, advocacy or research.

Kids with Heart National Association for Children's Heart Disorders

Our organization was formed in 1985 with the main mission of providing support, information, resources, and education for the families of the children living with congenital heart defects and to promote public awareness of the issues that these families live with on a day to day basis.

http://www.kidswithheart.org

Last Updated: 4 May 2015

View Details
SADS (Sudden Arrhythmia Death Syndromes) Foundation

Our mission is to save the lives of young people who are genetically predisposed to sudden death due to cardiac arrhythmia and to provide education and support to families and the medical community.

http://www.StopSADS.org

Last Updated: 23 Apr 2015

View Details

 

General Support Organizations

Not finding the support you need? Show General Support Organizations

 
 
 
 
Top

General Resources

SADS Foundation Website

Information on living with SADS, diagnosis, treatment, prevention, and advocacy/education.

Updated 29 Apr 2014

Go To URL
 
 
Top

Scientific Literature

Articles from the PubMed Database

Research articles describe the outcome of a single study. They are the published results of original research.
The terms "Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome" returned 233 free, full-text research articles on human participants. First 3 results:

Atrial Fibrillation in a 35-Year-Old Man with Wolff-Parkinson-White Syndrome.
 

Author(s): Bartosz Hudzik, Janusz Szkodzinski, Lech Polonski

Journal:

 

Last Updated: 27 Oct 2015

Go To URL
Response to letter regarding article, "Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome in the era of catheter ablation: insights from a registry study of 2169 patients".
 

Author(s): Carlo Pappone, Gabriele Vicedomini, Francesco Manguso, Massimo Saviano, Mario Baldi, Alessia Pappone, Cristiano Ciaccio, Luigi Giannelli, Bogdan Ionescu, Andrea Petretta, Raffaele Vitale, Amarild Cuko, Zarko Calovic, Angelica Fundaliotis, Mario Moscatiello, Luigi Tavazzi, Vincenzo Santinelli

Journal: Circulation. 2015 May;131(20):e499.

 

Last Updated: 19 May 2015

Go To URL

Reviews from the PubMed Database

Review articles summarize what is currently known about a disease. They discuss research previously published by others.
The terms "Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome" returned 10 free, full-text review articles on human participants. First 3 results:

Asymptomatic Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome: incidental ECG diagnosis and a review of literature regarding current treatment.
 

Author(s): Alexander Liu, Pawan Pusalkar

Journal:

 

A 19-year-old male presented with periorbital cellulitis responsive to intravenous antibiotics. A routine ECG on admission showed slurred upstroke of the QRS complexes consistent with Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome (WPW). He has never experienced any cardiac-related symptoms. Once ...

Last Updated: 13 Jun 2012

Go To URL
Mutation of mitochondrial DNA G13513A presenting with Leigh syndrome, Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome and cardiomyopathy.
 

Author(s): Shi-Bing Wang, Wen-Chin Weng, Ni-Chung Lee, Wuh-Liang Hwu, Pi-Chuan Fan, Wang-Tso Lee

Journal: Pediatr Neonatol. 2008 Aug;49(4):145-9.

 

Mutation of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) G13513A, encoding the ND5 subunit of respiratory chain complex I, can cause mitochondrial encephalopathy with lactic acidosis and stroke-like episodes (MELAS) and Leigh syndrome. Wolff-Parkinson-White (WPW) syndrome and optic atrophy were reported ...

Last Updated: 5 Dec 2008

Go To URL
Mechanisms for the genesis of paroxysmal atrial fibrillation in the Wolff Parkinson-White syndrome: intrinsic atrial muscle vulnerability vs. electrophysiological properties of the accessory pathway.
 

Author(s): Osmar Antonio CenturiĆ³n, Akihiko Shimizu, Shojiro Isomoto, Atsushi Konoe

Journal: Europace. 2008 Mar;10(3):294-302.

 

Paroxysmal atrial fibrillation (PAF) develops in up to one-third of patients with the Wolff Parkinson-White syndrome (WPW). The reason for this high incidence of PAF in the WPW syndrome is not yet clearly understood. When PAF appears in patients with WPW syndrome who have anterograde ...

Last Updated: 29 Feb 2008

Go To URL
 
 
Top

Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment

There are currently no related results available in Genetics Home Reference.

There are currently no related results available in GeneReviews.

 
 
Top

Clinical Trial Information This information is provided by ClinicalTrials.gov

There are currently no open clinical trials for this condition.