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Am J Cardiol. 1997 Oct 23;80(8A):31G-44G.

General principles of antiarrhythmic therapy for ventricular tachyarrhythmias.

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Department of Medicine, University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, Denver 80262, USA.


Sudden cardiac death due to ventricular arrhythmias is a significant cause of mortality in patients with structural heart disease. Over the past several decades, the introduction of new pharmacologic and nonpharmacologic therapy has expanded the treatment options available. This article will focus on the use of antiarrhythmic medication for the treatment of ventricular arrhythmias and will review the following: (1) treatment goals for various clinical populations, (2) the mechanisms of antiarrhythmic and proarrhythmic actions of antiarrhythmic medications, and (3) empiric versus guided pharmacologic therapy.

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