The electrophysiologic properties of bepridil, a calcium channel blocker with additional effects on fast response tissues, were investigated in 10 patients with atrioventricular accessory pathways. Seven patients had Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome, and three had concealed atrioventricular pre-excitation. A dose of 4 mg/kg was administered intravenously over five minutes. Bepridil increased the AH interval and the functional refractory period of the atrioventricular node. The effective refractory periods of the right atrium and right ventricle were also increased. Bepridil prolonged refractoriness in the accessory pathway both in the anterograde and retrograde direction. After bepridil administration it was impossible to induce reciprocating tachycardia electrically in two patients because of conduction block in the normal pathway. On the other hand, the zone of tachycardia was often increased after bepridil. Nevertheless, the heart rate during tachycardia was slowed by depression of conduction in both the normal and accessory pathways. The findings of this study provide a basis for the antiarrhythmic action of bepridil in patients with atrioventricular accessory pathways.
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