Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome in children: Electrophysiologic and pharmacologic characteristics

P. C. Gillette, A. Garson, J. D. Kugler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

55 Scopus citations


Intracardiac electrophysiologic studies were performed on 28 infants and children, ages 1 month to 18 years, with the Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome to try to determine 1) the electrophysiologic characteristics of the accessory connection and 2) the mechanisms of associated supraventricular dysrhythmias. Although the antegrade refractory periods of the normal conduction system were shorter than those found in adults, those of the accessory connection were slightly longer. Reciprocating supraventricular tachycardia (SVT), which had been a clinical problem in 26 of 28, could be induced in the laboratory in all 26 subjects. The mechanisms involved reentry with antegrade conduction through the atrioventricular (AV) node and retrograde through the accessory connection in 22. Eleven of these 22 had a wide QRS during tachycardia due to a bundle branch block. Three other subjects had wide QRS tachycardia, but the mechanism involved antegrade conduction through the accessory connection and retrograde through the AV node. The other patient had AV node reentry tachycardia. Two patients did not have clinical SVT, and in these two, SVT could not be induced. Neither patient had retrograde conduction through the accessory connection. The site of the accessory connection could be identified in 26 subjects by the sequence of retrograde activation of the atrium during SVT or ventricular pacing. Digitalis shortened the refractory period of the accessory connection in five of the eight patients studied.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1487-1495
Number of pages9
Issue number7
StatePublished - 1979
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)


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