Anatomical-based percutaneous left stellate ganglion block in patients with drug-refractory electrical storm and structural heart disease: a single-centre case series

Simone Savastano, Veronica Dusi, Enrico Baldi, Roberto Rordorf, Antonio Sanzo, Rita Camporotondo, Rosa Fracchia, Sara Compagnoni, Laura Frigerio, Luigi Oltrona Visconti, Gaetano Maria De Ferrari

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

AIMS: The adoption of percutaneous stellate ganglion blockade for the treatment of drug-refractory electrical storm (ES) has been increasingly reported; however, the time of onset of the anti-arrhythmic effects, the safety of a purely anatomical approach in conscious patients and the additional benefit of repeated procedures remain unclear. METHODS AND RESULTS: This study included consecutive patients undergoing percutaneous left stellate ganglion blockade (PLSGB) in our centre for drug-refractory ES. Lidocaine, bupivacaine, or a combination of both were injected in the vicinity of the left stellate ganglion. Overall, 18 PLSGBs were performed in 11 patients (age 69 ± 13 years; 63.6% men, left ventricular ejection fraction 31.6 ± 16%). Seven patients received only one PLSGB; three underwent two procedures and one required three PLSGB and two continuous infusions to control ventricular arrhythmias (VAs). All PLSGBs were performed with an anatomical approach; lidocaine, alone, or in combination was used in 77.7% of the procedures. The median burden of VAs 1 h after each block was zero compared with five in the hour before (P < 0.001); 83% of the patients were free from VAs; the efficacy at 24 h increased with repeated blocks. The anti-arrhythmic efficacy of PLSGB was not related to anisocoria. No procedure-related complications were reported. CONCLUSION: Anatomical-based PLSGB is a safe and rapidly effective treatment for refractory ES; repeated blocks provide additional benefits. Percutaneous left stellate ganglion blockade should be considered for stabilizing patients to allow further ES management.

Keywords

  • Autonomic nervous system
  • Electrical storm
  • Neuromodulation
  • Percutaneous stellate ganglion bloc
  • Ventricular arrhythmias

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)

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