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Familial sudden death syndrome with an abnormal signal-averaged electrocardiogram as a potential marker

Authors
Journal
American Heart Journal
0002-8703
Publisher
Elsevier
Publication Date
Volume
130
Issue
2
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/0002-8703(95)90447-6
Disciplines
  • Biology
  • Medicine

Abstract

Abstract Most familial sudden cardiac death syndromes are associated with structural heart disease or 12-lead electrocardiographic abnormalities. Additionally, the utility of signal-averaged electrocardiograms in patients with familial sudden death syndromes has not been examined. We studied a kindred with sudden death to determine whether they could be classified into any of the previously described syndromes and whether an abnormal signal-averaged electrocardiogram is a marker for this trait. Surviving family members had normal 12-lead electrocardiograms and echocardiograms. Two of the patients who died from ventricular arrhythmias had normal hearts on autopsy. Two surviving family members had a clinical history of arrhythmic events; both had abnormal signal-averaged electrocardiograms and inducible ventricular arrhythmias during electrophysiologic studies. The other family members had normal signal-averaged electrocardiograms. This familial sudden death syndrome appears to be unique because the patients have anatomically normal hearts and normal 12-lead electrocardiograms. An abnormal signal-averaged electrocardiogram may be a marker for the sudden death trait.

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