Torsades de pointes

Revision as of 05:00, 8 January 2014 by ManpreetS2006 (talk | contribs) (Minor edit)


  • Torsades de Pointes is a form of polymorphic VTach, where there is a gradual change in the amplitude and twisting of the QRS complexes around the isoelectric line
  • Associated with prolonged QT, which may be congenital or acquired. POINTES mnemonic for common etiologies:
    • Phenothiazines
    • Other medications (ie TCAs)
    • Intracranial bleed
    • No known cause (idiopathic)
    • Type I anti-arrhythmics (quinidine, procainamide, disopyramide)
    • Electrolyte abnormalities
    • Syndrome of Prolonged QT (aka Long QT Syndrome)


Increasing HR decreases QT interval

  1. Magnesium - decreases calcium influx
    1. 1-2gm IV over 1-2 min, repeat in 5-15min; then 1-2gm/hr (3-10mg/min) gtt
      1. Danger of hyperMag2+ → depressed neuromuscular function, so monitor closely
      2. Supplement with K+
  2. Isoproterenol - Increases HR / AV conduction
    1. 2-8 mcg/min
  3. Overdrive Pacing - Atrial > Ventricular pacing
    1. Goal HR 90-120
  4. Synchronized Cardioversion - Pt in extremis

See Also


  • Tintinalli