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Article
February 1943

ACTION OF DIGITALIS ON CONDUCTION IN THE SYNDROME OF SHORT PR INTERVAL AND PROLONGED QRS COMPLEX

Author Affiliations

NEW YORK

From the Cardiac Service, Sea View Hospital, and the Department of Pharmacology, Cornell University Medical College.

Arch Intern Med (Chic). 1943;71(2):206-218. doi:10.1001/archinte.1943.00210020072005
Abstract

It is stated that the effect of digitalis on the heart can simulate almost every type of electrocardiographic abnormality due to cardiac disorders with the exception of intraventricular conduction defects.1 As far as the normal electrocardiogram is concerned, this statement is undoubtedly true. The observations of Hart,2 however, have been widely cited in the literature as indicating that digitalis may occasionally cause a delay in intraventricular conduction and a consequent widening of the QRS complex.

In this study prolongation of the QRS time was produced by digitalis in the course of a clinical experiment. The observations were made in a case of so-called "bundle branch block with short PR interval," a syndrome first observed by Wilson3 and subsequently described by Wolff, Parkinson and White.4 Bishop5 more recently reviewed 45 cases of this syndrome reported in the literature, but as far as we are able to

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