First recognized in 1957, the surdo-cardiac syndrome includes congenital deafness, prolonged QT interval, and a high incidence of syncope and sudden death. Haemodynamic studies in two patients were normal except for an abnormal wave during left ventricular diastole probably related to abnormal left ventricular relaxation. The syncopal attacks are based on cardiac arrhythmias: both ventricular fibrillation and asystole may occur. Abnormal adrenergic stimulation of the heart is probably responsible. Propranolol appears to be effective in preventing the syncopal attacks. Artificial pacemaking provoked ventricular fibrillation in one patient and seems contraindicated.
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