Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Prolonged QT Interval Overview

Another name for Prolonged QT Interval is Long QT Syndrome.

What is long QT syndrome?
A person with long QT syndrome has a delay in the electrical impulse that travels through the heart. Normally, an electrical impulse stimulates the muscle fibers in the heart to contract. The impulse spreads through the heart in a very organized manner, allowing the heart to pump blood effectively. The delay in the electrical impulse caused by long QT syndrome can result in life-threatening, abnormal electrical impulses. Long QT syndrome may be inherited, or caused by a medication side effect.

What are the symptoms of long QT syndrome?
About one third of those with long QT syndrome do not develop symptoms. Symptoms of long QT syndrome may include palpitations and fainting.

How does the doctor treat long QT syndrome?
Long QT syndrome has the potential to cause an abnormal heart rhythm that results in sudden death. Treatment for long QT syndrome may include cardiac monitoring, beta-blockers, and an implantable cardiac defibrillator.

Continue to Prolonged QT Interval Incidence

Last Updated: Feb 10, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Prolonged QT Interval References
  1. Chiang CE. Congenital and acquired long QT syndrome. Current concepts and management. Cardiol Rev. 2004 Jul-Aug;12(4):222-34. [15191637]
  2. Khan IA, Gowda RM. Novel therapeutics for treatment of long-QT syndrome and torsade de pointes. Int J Cardiol. 2004 May;95(1):1-6. [15159030]
  3. Khositseth A, Martinez MW, Driscoll DJ, Ackerman MJ. Syncope in children and adolescents and the congenital long QT syndrome. Am J Cardiol. 2003 Sep 15;92(6):746-9. [12972126]
  4. Mancuso EM, Brady WJ, Harrigan RA, Pollack M, Chan T. Electrocardiographic manifestations: long QT Syndrome. J Emerg Med. 2004 Nov;27(4):385-93. [15498621]
  5. Moss AJ, Kass RS. Long QT syndrome: from channels to cardiac arrhythmias. J Clin Invest. 2005 Aug;115(8):2018-24. [16075042]
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