Ventricular arrhythmias induced by long-term use of ephedrine in two competitive athletes

Michela Casella, Antonio Dello Russo, Gennaro Izzo, Maurizio Pieroni, Daniele Andreini, Eleonora Russo, Daniele Colombo, Fabrizio Bologna, Leonardo Bolognese, Paolo Zeppilli, Claudio Tondo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Ephedrine is a sympathomimetic substance used by sportsmen as a doping substance because of its stimulating and slimming effects. We report two cases of ventricular arrhythmias induced by abuse of ephedrine in two competitive athletes. Endomyocardial biopsies guided by electroanatomic mapping revealed contraction-band necrosis, a myocardial injury frequently observed in cases of catecholamine excess. Our cases suggest that long-term abuse of ephedrine may result in myocardial damage, and that these structural alterations may promote areas of slow conduction favoring re-entrant ventricular tachyarrhythmias and a long-lasting risk of ventricular arrhythmias.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)280-283
Number of pages4
JournalHeart and Vessels
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Mar 1 2015


  • Electroanatomic mapping
  • Endomyocardial biopsy
  • Ventricular arrhythmia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Medicine(all)


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