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Usefulness of tilt testing in children with syncope: a survey of pediatric electrophysiologists.

Creative Commons 'BY' version 4.0 license

The role of tilt table testing as a diagnostic modality in children with unexplained syncope is unclear. We sent a questionnaire to members of the Pediatric and Congenital Electrophysiology Society to assess the current practice pattern. Of the 186 members, 97 (52%) replied. Twenty four percent of the pediatric electrophysiologists have completely stopped doing tilt table tests and of those performing the tests, a majority (76%) did < 10 tests/yr (median=3 tilts/yr, range 0-100/yr). Of those performing the test, 95% rarely or never accepted direct referrals from the general practioners and 62% felt that the frequency of tilt table tests being performed had decreased since they had started practicing. The median usefulness of the test was rated at 3 (range 1-9) on a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being very useful. A majority (68%) felt they rarely or never altered treatment based on the results of the tilt test. Wide variability was noted in the test protocol including the tilt angle, tilt duration, use of pharmacologic agents and the duration of fasting prior to the test. We therefore conclude that there is significant lack of standardization in tilt table tests performed in children. Tilt table testing, as perceived by pediatric electrophysiologists, is of limited utility and progressively less used in children with syncope.

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