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Intravenous Propafenone for Termination of Reentrant Supraventricular Tachycardia: A Placebo-Controlled, Randomized, Double-Blind, Crossover Study

EDWARD N. SHEN, M.D.; EDMUND KEUNG, M.D.; EDWARD HUYCKE, M.D.; MARY L. DOHRMANN, M.D.; NGAI NGUYEN, M.D.; FRED MORADY, M.D.; and RUEY J. SUNG, M.D.
[+] Article and Author Information

Grant support: in part by a grant from Knoll Pharmaceutical Co. , Whippany, New Jersey. Dr. Nguyen is a research fellow at the Cardiovascular Research Institute, University of California, San Francisco, and is sponsored by grant HL-07192 from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, Bethesda, Maryland.

▸Correspondence should be addressed to Ruey J. Sung, M.D.; 5G1, Division of Cardiology, Department of Medicine, San Francisco General Hospital, 1001 Potrero Avenue; San Francisco, CA 94110.


San Francisco, California


© 1986 American College of PhysiciansAmerican College of Physicians


Ann Intern Med. 1986;105(5):655-661. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-105-5-655
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To assess the antiarrhythmic efficacy of intravenous propafenone, 20 patients with inducible sustained supraventricular tachycardia received propafenone, 2 mg/ kg body weight, or placebo in a double-blind, randomized, crossover study. Three patients had intra-atrial reentrant tachycardia, 3 had atrioventricular nodal reentrant tachycardia, and 14 had atrioventricular reciprocating tachycardia associated with the Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome. Termination of supraventricular tachycardia occurred in 15 of the 20 patients receiving propafenone but 0 of the 11 patients receiving placebo (p < 0.01). Propafenone prolonged refractoriness and slowed conduction of the atrium, the atrioventricular node, and accessory atrioventricular bypass tracts, and these effects provided antiarrhythmic action to halt tachycardia. No adverse effects were observed in any patient. We conclude that intravenous propafenone is safe and effective in the acute treatment of various forms of reentrant supraventricular tachycardia.

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