Defibrillation/cardioversion thresholds were measured in 33 patients undergoing defibrillator implants. Each patient had a 12 cm2 patch placed near the left ventricular apex via a thoracotomy and a 10 cm2 spring lead placed pervenously at the right atrial-superior vena caval junction. Ventricular tachycardia of stable morphology, polymorphic ventricular tachycardia, or ventricular fibrillation was induced four times in each patient and 1, 5, 10, and 25 J truncated exponential shocks with 60% tilt were given in a random sequence. The conversion rate was constant (77%, 86%, 87%, 85%) with increasing energy for ventricular tachycardia but progressively increased for polymorphic ventricular tachycardia and ventricular fibrillation (8%, 33%, 58%, 92%). The ventricular tachycardia acceleration rates for 1, 5, 10, and 25 J were 23%, 14%, 10%, and 15%. Patients not reliably converted with 25 J may require repositioning of leads or two patches. We conclude that for the spring-patch electrodes, increasing energy from 1 to 25 J improves the conversion rate for polymorphic ventricular tachycardia and ventricular fibrillation; the ventricular tachycardia conversion rate is constant. Acceleration of ventricular tachycardia occurs at all energies. Defibrillator implantation requires extensive intraoperative electrophysiologic testing to ensure safe and reliable termination of ventricular tachycardia and fibrillation.
View details for Web of Science ID A1984SJ86000016
View details for PubMedID 6697460