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Am J Emerg Med. 2005 Nov;23(7):876-89.

Wide-complex tachycardia: beyond the traditional differential diagnosis of ventricular tachycardia vs supraventricular tachycardia with aberrant conduction.

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Department of Emergency Medicine, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA 22908, USA.


Wide-complex tachycardia (WCT) is defined as a rhythm disturbance with a rate greater than 100 beats/min and a QRS complex duration of 0.12 seconds or more in the adult patient; in the pediatric patient, both rate and QRS complex width are age related. In evaluating this type of tachycardia, there are 2 broad categories usually discussed in the medical literature: ventricular and supraventricular with aberrant intraventricular conduction. There are several other important causes of a WCT encountered in clinical practice, which are less often discussed; these tachycardias often require specific therapies differing from the standard approach to WCT. These tachycardias are diverse; as such, the pathophysiology behind each form of WCT includes toxic, metabolic, and conduction system dysfunction mechanisms.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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