Author + information
- Received March 25, 1993
- Revision received November 11, 1993
- Accepted November 17, 1993
- Published online April 1, 1994.
- David H. Hoch, MD, PhD, FACCa,∗,
- William P. Batsford, MD∗,
- Steven M. Greenberg, MD, FACCa,
- Craig M. McPherson, MD, FACC∗,
- Lynda E. Rosenfeld, MD, FACC∗,
- Mark Marieb, MD∗ and
- Joseph H. Levine, MD, FACCa
- ↵∗Address for correspondence: Dr. David H. Hoch, Cardiac Arrhythmia and Pacemaker Center, St. Francis Hospital, 100 Port Washington Boulevard, Roslyn, New York 11576.
Objectives. A technique for terminating refractory ventricular fibrillation is described.
Background. Refractory ventricular fibrillation can occur in up to 0.1% of electrophysiologic studies. Animal studies have shown that rapid sequential shocks may reduce ventricular fibrillation threshold.
Methods. Five patients of 2,990 consecutive patients in a 3-year period experienced refractory ventricular fibrillation during 5,450 routine electrophysiologic studies. Multiple shocks were delivered by means of a single defibrillator. Double sequential shocks were delivered externally 0.5 to 4.5 s apart by means of two defibrillators with separate pairs of electrodes.
Results. In all patients, standard defibrillation was unsuccessful, but all were successfully resuscitated using the double sequential shocks.
Conclusions. This report stresses the importance of an additional defibrillator being readily available during electrophysiologic testing. This technique of rapid, double sequential external shocks may have general applicability, providing a simple and potentially lifesaving approach to refractory ventricular fibrillation.
- Received March 25, 1993.
- Revision received November 11, 1993.
- Accepted November 17, 1993.