April 1987

Magnesium in the Prevention of Lethal Arrhythmias in Acute Myocardial Infarction

Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Medicine (Drs Abraham and Kramer), Cardiology (Drs Rosenmann, Balkin, and Zion), and Biochemistry (Dr Eylath), Shaare Zedek Medical Center, and the Statistical Consultation Service, Hebrew University (Dr Farbstien), Jerusalem.

Arch Intern Med. 1987;147(4):753-755. doi:10.1001/archinte.1987.00370040135023

• Seven of 48 patients (14.6%) with acute myocardial infarction who were given 2.4 g of magnesium sulfate as a single intravenous dose had potentially lethal arrhythmias during the first 24 hours after admission, whereas 16 (34.8%) of 46 patients receiving placebo had similar arrhythmias. In addition, 14 of these 16 patients in the placebo group had their first arrhythmia (in the intensive coronary-care unit) within two hours after the start of the study, whereas in the magnesiumtreated group, there were no such arrhythmias until some four hours later. The higher the lymphocyte potassium concentration, the greater the reduction in the incidence of arrhythmias. Serum magnesium levels increased by 16.5% and lymphocyte magnesium concentrations by 72% in the magnesium treated group. Intravenous magnesium reduces the incidence of serious arrhythmias after acute myocardial infarction.

(Arch Intern Med 1987;147:753-755)