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September 1960

The Adams-Stokes Syndrome During Normal Sinus Rhythm and Transient Heart Block: 2. The Effects of Digitalis Glycosides on Patients with the Adams-Stokes Syndrome During Normal Sinus Rhythm and Transient Heart Block

Author Affiliations

New York

From the Medical Division of the Montefiore Hospital.

Arch Intern Med. 1960;106(3):388-399. doi:10.1001/archinte.1960.03820030076012

The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of digitalis glycosides on patients with Adams-Stokes seizures due to ventricular asystole during the presence of normal sinus rhythm and transient heart block. There is a marked disparity of views concerning the value and limitations of digitalis bodies on such patients.

It has been assumed by some observers 1 that the periods of ventricular asystole occur in the transitions from partial to complete heart block. In order to avoid such changes, digitalis has been recommended for the establishment of complete heart block so as to obviate the transitional periods—the implications being that with the appearance of complete heart block the Adams-Stokes seizures would cease entirely.

Again, others2 are under the impression that digitalis could be of help in Adams-Stokes disease only in the presence of congestive heart failure causing anoxia of the cardiac system leading to heart block. The

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