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      The Role of Amiodarone in Recent-Onset Atrial Fibrillation after Ibutilide Has Failed to Restore Sinus Rhythm

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          Background: Ibutilide is a class III antiarrhythmic drug that is used for the cardioversion of atrial arrhythmias, but it can cause torsades de pointes. Amiodarone is also used for the cardioversion of atrial fibrillation and prolongs the QT interval but rarely causes torsades de pointes. Methods and Results: The study included 51 consecutive patients with recent onset atrial fibrillation in whom the administration of ibutilide failed to restore sinus rhythm. In those patients we decided to proceed to intravenous administration of amiodarone. The QT intervals were measured on 12-lead ECG. After 11 ± 5 h of the administration of the amiodarone, 42 patients (82%) were on sinus rhythm. There was no episode of non-sustained torsades de pointes or hypotension that followed the administration of the two antiarrhythmic agents. Conclusions: The administration of amiodarone in the case of ibutilide failure may be a useful adjunct to current cardioversion protocols for recent onset atrial fibrillation.

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          Most cited references 8

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          Agreement and reproducibility of automatic versus manual measurement of QT interval and QT dispersion.

          To determine whether the automatic measurement of the QT interval is consistent with the manual measurement, this study evaluated the reproducibility and agreement of both methods in 70 normal subjects and 54 patients with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. The mean, minimum, and maximum QT interval and QT dispersion were computed in a set of 6 consecutive electrocardiograms (3 in the supine and 3 in the standing position) obtained from each subject. The automatic method determined the T-wave end as the intersect of the least-squares-fit line around the tangent to the T-wave downslope with the isoelectric baseline. Manual measurements were obtained using a high-resolution digitizing board. QT dispersion was defined as the difference between the maximum and minimum QT interval and as standard deviations of the QT interval duration in all and precordial leads. In patients with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, the absolute values of the QT interval and QT dispersion were significantly higher than those in normal subjects (p < 0.0001). In both groups, the intrasubject variability of the QT interval was significantly lower with automatic than with manual measurement (p < 0.05). The agreement between automatic and manual QT interval measurements was surprisingly poor, but it was better in patients with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (r2 = 0.46 to 0.67) than in normal subjects (r2 = 0.10 to 0.25). In both groups, the reproducibility and agreement of both methods for QT dispersion were significantly poorer than for QT interval. Hence, the automatic QT interval measurements are more stable and reproducible than manual measurement, but the lack of agreement between manual and automatic measurement suggests that clinical experience gained with manual assessment cannot be applied blindly to data obtained from the automatic systems.
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            Ibutilide versus amiodarone in atrial fibrillation: a double-blinded, randomized study.

            Ibutilide, a class III antiarrhythmic drug, has been shown to convert atrial fibrillation to sinus rhythm more rapidly than procainamide or sotalol. Our objective was to compare the efficacy and safety of ibutilide and amiodarone in patients after cardiac surgery. Prospective, randomized, double-blinded study. Intensive care unit of a university hospital. Forty adults with an onset of atrial fibrillation within 3 hrs after admission. Before the administration of antiarrhythmic drugs, a 24-hr Holter electrocardiograph was attached. Patients in the ibutilide group received ibutilide 0.008 mg/kg body weight over 10 mins; treatment was repeated if atrial fibrillation or flutter persisted. If sinus rhythm was not achieved within 4 hrs, amiodarone 5 mg/kg was administered over 30 mins, followed by amiodarone 15 mg/kg over 24 hrs. Patients in the amiodarone group received amiodarone 5 mg/kg over 30 mins, followed by amiodarone 15 mg/kg over 24 hrs if atrial fibrillation or flutter continued. Within the first 4 hrs, atrial fibrillation was converted in nine of 20 patients (45%) in group ibutilide and in ten of 20 patients (50%) in group amiodarone (not significant). Mean time for conversion overall was 385 mins in group ibutilide and 495 mins in group amiodarone (not significant). In group amiodarone, the protocol was discontinued in two patients because of severe arterial hypotension. Atrial fibrillation recurred in 11 of 20 patients (55%) in group ibutilide and in seven of 20 patients (35%) in group amiodarone (not significant). Ventricular arrhythmia did not occur during the first 24 hrs of the protocol. Ibutilide has no significant advantage over amiodarone for the conversion of atrial fibrillation to sinus rhythm in either time to conversion or conversion overall, but severe hypotension was not seen with ibutilide.
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              Ibutilide added to propafenone for the conversion of atrial fibrillation and atrial flutter


                Author and article information

                S. Karger AG
                May 2007
                06 February 2007
                : 107
                : 4
                : 399-401
                Cardiology Department, General Hospital of Karditsa, Karditsa, Greece
                99059 Cardiology 2007;107:399–401
                © 2007 S. Karger AG, Basel

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                Page count
                Tables: 2, References: 12, Pages: 3
                Original Research


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