Author + information
- Received January 25, 1993
- Revision received May 26, 1993
- Accepted June 9, 1993
- Published online November 15, 1993.
- David S.W. Ho, MBBS, FRACP1,
- Mark J. Cooper, MBBS, PhD, FRACP, FACC,
- David A.B. Richards, MD, FRACP, FACC,
- John B. Uther, MD, FRACP, FACC,
- Alex S.B. Yip, MBBS, MRCP and
- David L. Ross, MBBS, FRACP, FACC∗
- ↵∗Address for correspondence: Dr. David L. Ross, Cardiology Unit, Westmead Hospital, Westmead, Sydney, New South Wales, 2145, Australia.
Objectives. The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of varying basic cycle lengths in a programmed stimulation protocol if up to seven extrastimuli were available at each basic cycle length.
Background. There is no uniformly accepted protocol for induction of ventricular tachycardia. Most protocols limit the number of extrastimuli to two or three but use several basic cycle lengths.
Methods. Twenty-eight patients with coronary artery disease and documented spontaneous sustained ventricular tachycardia or ventricular fibrillation were studied. In the absence of antiarrhythmic drugs, each patient underwent three inductions of ventricular tachycardia/ventricular fibrillation using sinus rhythm or right ventricular pacing at 600 or 400 ms as the basic cycle length. Up to seven extrastimuli were allowed at each basic cycle length.
Results. The maximal yield of clinical tachycardia (96%) was identical for each basic cycle length and was achieved using a maximum of seven, five and four extrastimuli for sinus rhythm and 600 and 400 ms, respectively. A basic cycle length of 400 ms required fewer extrastimuli (2.4 ± 0.7) to induce ventricular tachycardia/ventricular fibrillation than did 600 ms (2.7 ± 1.1, p = 0.014) or sinus rhythm (3.4 ± 1.2, p < 0.001). There was no significant difference in the cycle lengths of the induced ventricular tachycardia, incidence of induced ventricular fibrillation or requirement for direct current countershock.
Conclusions. The use of an adequate number of extrastimuli obviates the need for multiple basic cycle lengths for induction of ventricular tachycardia and does not increase induction of unwanted ventricular fibrillation. If only one basic cycle length is used, the ease of inducibility can be quantified in terms of the number of extrastimuli required. Fewer extrastimuli were required for induction of ventricular tachycardia if a basic cycle length of 400 ms was used. These data favor the use of ventricular pacing at a basic cycle length of 400 ms with up to at least four extrastimuli as the standard stimulation protocol for induction of ventricular tachycardia.
- Received January 25, 1993.
- Revision received May 26, 1993.
- Accepted June 9, 1993.