The antiarrhythmic efficacy of a new class I agent, penticainide, was evaluated by acute oral drug testing and compared in the same patient population with the efficacy of disopyramide, flecainide, mexiletine and propafenone. Twenty-five patients with high-grade chronic ventricular arrhythmias entered the study. During acute oral drug testing, penticainide (7 mg/kg) was effective (more than 90% reduction in ventricular premature complexes and complete abolition of class 4A and 4B arrhythmias) in 17 of 25 subjects (68%). The mean plasma level of the drug at 90 minutes was 4.4 ± 1.9 μg/ml; at the same time increases in the PQ interval (from 168 ± 27 to 189 ± 31 ms, p <0.0001) and QRS duration (from 89 ± 14 to 96 ± 18 ms, p <0.001) were observed, the QTc was slightly but not significantly shortened in the overall population; however, in the subgroup with a basally prolonged QTc (n = 8), a significant reduction was observed (from 456 ± 8 to 440 ± 18 ms, p <0.02). No adverse effects were reported. The antiarrhythmic efficacy of the other drugs tested in the same population was: disopyramide, 12 of 19 (63%); flecainide, 13 of 24 (54%); propafenone, 13 of 24 (54%); and mexiletine, 7 of 20 (35%). Penticainide appears to be a well-tolerated and effective compound of potential value for treatment of ventricular arrhythmias.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine