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Management strategies for surgical treatment of dysrhythmias in infants and children

, : Management strategies for surgical treatment of dysrhythmias in infants and children. American Journal of Cardiology 63(15): 1069-1073

To elucidate the role of surgery in the management of refractory pediatric dysrhythmias, the investigators' 1987 experience with this therapy was reviewed. Sixteen patients (8 male, 8 female) had surgery. Age ranged from 3 months to 21 years (mean 7.7 years) with 2 being younger than 1 year of age. Eight patients had Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome with supraventricular tachycardia (SVT), 6 had SVT alone and 2 had ventricular tachycardia. Patient symptoms fell into 3 distinct categories. Nine patients had frequent non-life-threatening tachycardia episodes despite aggressive medical management, 4 patients had life-threatening symptoms either related to frequent tachycardia episodes or due to side effects of drugs and 3 patients had minimal tachycardia symptoms but were judged to be at risk for sudden death. The mechanisms of the tachycardias included reentrant SVT using an accessory atrioventricular connection in 9, the permanent form of junctional reciprocating tachycardia in 2, atrioventricular node reentrant SVT in 2, atrial ectopic focus in 1 and ventricular ectopic foci in 2. Ablation techniques involved either surgical dissection or cryoablation of the arrhythmogenic substrates. There was no surgical mortality and follow-up shows 15 of 16 patients to have had no recurrence of symptomatic tachycardia without any therapy. Based on this experience, management strategies for surgical control of recalcitrant pediatric dysrhythmias are proposed. Surgery for infant dysrhythmias are proposed. Surgery for infant dysrhythmias should be performed only for life-threatening symptoms. Beyond the first year of life, after failing 2 medications, surgical options for SVT should be considered. For patients with ventricular tachycardia, aggressive medical management with class II, IC and III agents should be attempted before surgical therapy.


PMID: 2705377

DOI: 10.1016/0002-9149(89)90080-5

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