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Indications for Antiarrhythmic Therapy: A Wealth of Controversy, A Dearth of Data

Ann Intern Med. 1988;108(3):450-452. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-108-3-450
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Few situations in medicine are comparable to that involving antiarrhythmic drugs, in which so many potentially toxic agents are given to so many patients without proof of benefit. Will using this class of drugs parallel the experience with antihypertensives, for example, or will they pass into antiquity with practices like treatment of fever with purgatives? For years, physicians prescribed antihypertensives with the hope that control of this risk factor would improve mortality. We now know that control of severe hypertension by any means provides clinical benefit by reducing the incidence of stroke, myocardial infarction, and renal failure (1, 2). However,


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