Ventricular Arrhythmias

  • Sohaib Tariq
  • Howard A. CooperEmail author


Ventricular arrhythmias encompass a spectrum from isolated premature ventricular complexes to ventricular fibrillation, manifest by clinical syndromes ranging from palpitations to sudden cardiac death. Episodes may be isolated or recurrent (electrical storm). Myocardial ischemia, underlying structural heat disease, and channelopathies are the most common etiologies of ventricular arrhythmias. The management of life-threatening sustained ventricular arrhythmias—including monomorphic and polymorphic ventricular tachycardia (VT) and ventricular fibrillation (VF)—is an important skill in critical care medicine. In the setting of pulseless VT or VF, guideline-directed ACLS—including defibrillation—should be implemented immediately. Diagnostic evaluation, including the selective use of blood tests, echocardiography, and coronary angiography, should be initiated simultaneous to treatment. Therapies should be tailored to the clinical situation, and may include electrolyte repletion, beta-adrenergic blockade, and the use of antiarrhythmic agents (particularly amiodarone), mechanical circulatory support, and radiofrequency catheter ablation.


Ventricular arrhythmias Ventricular tachycardia Ventricular fibrillation Sudden cardiac death Radiofrequency ablation Antiarrhythmic agents Electrical storm Mechanical circulatory support 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Division of CardiologyScripps Memorial HospitalLa JollaUSA
  2. 2.Division of CardiologyWestchester Medical Center and New York Medical CollegeValhallaUSA

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