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Expert Opin Pharmacother. 2006 Nov;7(16):2203-13.

Pharmacotherapy changes following pacemaker implantation in patients with bradycardia-tachycardia syndrome.

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  • 1Department of Cardiology, Medical University of Lublin, 8 Jaczewskiego Street, 20-954 Lublin, Poland.


The management of bradycardia-tachycardia syndrome (BTS) includes bradycardia and tachyarrhythmia therapy. At present, the treatment for symptomatic bradycardia in BTS patients is permanent cardiac pacing. The pharmacological treatment of atrial tachyarrhythmias comprises of rhythm and rate control, and prevention of thromboembolism. Patients with BTS often require both pacemaker and drug therapy. This article reviews the interactions of pacing and drug therapies in BTS. Drugs that alter cardiac electrophysiological properties may influence pacemaker indications, pacing mode selection, efficacy of pacing algorithms and pacing performance. Pacing by preventing drug-induced bradycardia increases the safety of pharmacotherapy and, thus, allows the intensification of those treatments. Pacing therapy and antiarrhythmic drugs used together as a hybrid therapy have a synergistic effect in the prevention of atrial tachyarrhythmias. Atrial-based pacing may reduce atrial tachyarrhythmia burden, allowing reduction of rhythm and rate control. Contemporary pacemakers' memory functions may help guide rhythm and rate control, as well as anticoagulation pharmacotherapy.

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