THE DIVING REFLEX USED TO TREAT PAROXYSMAL ATRIAL TACHYCARDIA

Kern Wildenthal, James M Atkins, StephenJ Leshin, C. Lynn Skelton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

53 Scopus citations

Abstract

Induction of the diving reflex, by immersion of the face in cold water (2°C) while the breath was held, converted paroxysmal atrial tachycardia to sinus rhythm within 15-35 seconds in seven patients (aged 22-66). Four had histories of attacks that had previously required vasopressor therapy, and two had been digitalised; three had no history of prior paroxysmal atrial tachycardia or heart-disease. The reported procedure, which is convenient, non-invasive, and can be self administered by the patient after brief instruction, may offer a useful adjunct to carotid-sinus massage and intravenous infusion of vasopressors for the treatment of paroxysmal atrial tachycardia.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)12-14
Number of pages3
JournalThe Lancet
Volume305
Issue number7897
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 4 1975

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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