electrical storm

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electrical storm

electrical storm image from New Medical Terms

EKG of electrical storm


Definition A state of cardiac electrical instability characterised by multiple volleys of ventricular tachycardia–VT storm or fibrillation–VF storm over a short time.

Comment The clinical definition of what constitutes an electrical storm–ES is varied, arbitrary, and a source of ongoing debate. Most patients die, especially if they have had a recent myocardial infarction.

Definition, without an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator–ICD.

(1) Occurrence of ≥ 2 haemodynamically stable ventricular tachyarrhythmias within 24 hours

(2) VT occurring immediately after termination, or

(3) Sustained and non-sustained VT resulting in a total number of ventricular ectopic beats greater than sinus beats in a 24 hour period .

Definition, with an ICD Electrical storm is defined as three or more appropriate treatments for ventricular tachyarrhythmias, including anti-tachycardia pacing or shocks, recognising that this definition fails to account for VT which at slower than the programmed detection rate of the device.

Aetiology Prior myocardial infarction, Brugada syndrome, electrical shock

Synonym Arrhythmic storm 

Image (above) displays repeated onset of polymorphic arrhythmias in a patient with Brugada syndrome.

From Indian Pacing Electrophysiol. J. 2005;5(1):25-34

METEOROLOGY Thunderstorm, see there

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