John B. Barlow: Master clinician and compleat cardiologist

Authors

  • Tsung O. Cheng M.D.

    Corresponding author
    1. Division of Cardiology, Department of Medicine, The George Washington University Medical Center, Washington, DC, USA
    • Division of Cardiology Department of Medicine The George Washington University Medical Center 2 150 Pennsylvania Ave. NW Washington, DC 20037
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Abstract

This paper reports the case of a 76-year-old man in whom atrial flutter with varying atrioventricular block and intermittent right bundle-branch block was found. This is the first report on tachycardia-dependent right bundle-branch block associated with supernormal conduction in a case of atrial flutter. When an impulse is conducted to the ventricles beyond 0.72 s after a QRS complex of right bundle-branch block configuration, the impulse falls after the abnormally long effective refractory period of the right bundle branch and passes through the right bundle branch. When the conducted impulse occurs within 0.72 s after a QRS complex of right bundle-branch block configuration, the impulse usually falls in the refractory period and is blocked in the right bundle branch; however, only when the impulse occurs 0.48 or 0.49 s after that does it fall in the supernormal period and passes through the right bundle branch. The findings in the present report strengthen our previous suggestion that the presence of supernormal conduction plays an important role in the initiation of reentrant ventricular tachycardia.

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