Ventricular Tachycardia Information


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Home :: Diseases :: Ventricular Tachycardia

Ventricular Tachycardia Information

Ventricular tachycardia is defined as three or more consecutive ventricular premature beats. The usual rate is 160–240 beats/min and is moderately regular but less so than atrial tachycardia. The distinction from aberrant conduction of supraventricular tachycardia may be difficult. The usual mechanism is reentry, but abnormally triggered rhythms occur. Ventricular tachycardia is either nonsustained (lasting less than 30 seconds) or sustained. It may be asymptomatic or associated with syncope or milder symptoms of impaired cerebral perfusion.

Ventricular tachycardia is a frequent complication of acute myocardial infarction and dilated cardiomyopathy but may occur in chronic coronary disease, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, mitral valve prolapse, myocarditis, and in most other forms of myocardial disease. Torsade de pointes, a form of ventricular tachycardia in which QRS morphology twists around the baseline, may occur spontaneously in the setting of hypokalemia or hypomagnesemia or after any drug that prolongs the QT interval; it has a particularly poor prognosis. In nonacute settings, most patients with ventricular tachycardia have known or easily detectable cardiac disease, and the finding of ventricular tachycardia is an unfavorable prognostic sign.


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