Author + information
- Received October 11, 1983
- Revision received January 24, 1984
- Accepted January 25, 1984
- Published online July 1, 1984.
- Nelson D. Mostow, MD, FACC§,*,‡,
- Louis Rakita, MD, FACC*,
- Thomas R. Vrobel, MD, FACC*,
- Deborah Noon* and
- Jeffrey Blumer, MD, PhD†
- ↵§Address for reprints: Nelson Mostow, MD, Division of Cardiology, Cleveland Metropolitan General Hospital, 3395 Scranton Road, Cleveland, Ohio 44109.
A major disadvantage of conventional amiodarone therapy is the long delay between initiation of therapy and arrhythmia suppression. In this study, the hypothesis was tested that complex ventricular arrhythmias would he suppressed rapidly by an intravenous amiodarone infusion designed to achieve and maintain a therapeutic serum concentration. Eleven patients were studied. Each underwent a single intravenous dose kinetic study, followed by a two stage infusion of amiodarone that achieved and maintained a serum concentration of 2 to 3 μg/ml. In seven patients, arrhythmias during hours 24 to 48 after the infusion were compared with arrhythmias without therapy. Amiodarone therapy reduced episodes of ventricular tachycardia by 85% (p < 0.01), paired premature ventricular complexes by 74% (p < 0.01) and premature ventricular complexes by 60% (p < 0.05). Four patients could not tolerate a control period without therapy because of symptomatic arrhythmias. In three patients, symptomatic arrhythmias were abolished during the 24 hour evaluation period. Two of 11 patients, both with severe left ventricular dysfunction, developed significant hypotension during the loading phase of the infusion.
It is concluded that the achievement and maintenance of a therapeutic serum concentration of intravenous amiodarone are effective in the rapid suppression of life-threatening ventricular arrhythmias. Caution should be employed when using large intravenous doses in patients with severely impaired left ventricular function.
- Received October 11, 1983.
- Revision received January 24, 1984.
- Accepted January 25, 1984.
- American College of Cardiology Foundation