Papers And Originals

Lignocaine Therapy after Acute Myocardial Infarction

Br Med J 1969; 1 doi: (Published 25 January 1969) Cite this as: Br Med J 1969;1:213
  1. M. P. Chopra,
  2. R. W. Portal,
  3. Clive P. Aber


    Thirty-five patients with ventricular dysrhythmias and seven with other dysrhythmias after acute myocardial infarction were treated with intravenous lignocaine.

    Satisfactory initial suppression of ventricular ectopic beats was achieved in 27 (82%) of 33 patients after either a 50-mg. bolus or a 50-mg. bolus followed by a 100-mg. bolus of intravenous 2% lignocaine. Continuous suppression of ventricular ectopic beats was accomplished in 21 (78%) of these 27 patients by continuous intravenous lignocaine infusions of 1 to 2 mg. per minute. Recurrence of ventricular ectopic beats occurred in four patients despite lignocaine infusion rates of up to 6 mg. per minute. Six patients with ventricular ectopic beats developed ventricular fibrillation despite satisfactory initial suppression of their dysrhythmia by lignocaine. In three of them ventricular fibrillation supervened while they were receiving a lignocaine infusion and two subsequently died. Unheralded ventricular fibrillation occurred in three other patients between four and seven days after completing the full course of lignocaine therapy.

    Toxic effects of lignocaine were minimal in patients receiving 1 to 2 mg. per minute.