Diagnosis, treatment and follow up of neonatal arrhythmias

Cardiovasc J Afr. 2014 Mar-Apr;25(2):58-62. doi: 10.5830/CVJA-2014-002.


Objective: This study aimed to evaluate the aetiology, spectrum, course and outcomes of neonates with arrhythmias observed in a tertiary neonatal intensive care unit from 2007 to 2012.

Methods: Neonates with rhythm problems were included. The results of electrocardiography (ECG), Holter ECG, echocardiography and biochemical analysis were evaluated. The long-term results of follow up were reviewed.

Results: Forty-five patients were male (68%) and 21 (32%) were female. Fifty-five patients (83.3%) were term, 11 (16.6%) were preterm, and 34% were diagnosed in the prenatal period. Twenty cases (30.3%) had congenital heart disease. Twenty-three patients (34.8%) were diagnosed during the foetal period. The most common arrhythmias were supraventricular ectopic beats and supraventricular tachycardia (SVT) at 39.3 and 22.7%, respectively. SVT recurred in five patients after the neonatal period.

Conclusion: Supraventricular ectopic beats and SVT were the most common arrhythmias during the neonatal period. Although the prognosis of arrhythmias in the neonatal period is relatively good, regular monitoring is required.

MeSH terms

  • Arrhythmias, Cardiac / diagnosis*
  • Arrhythmias, Cardiac / physiopathology
  • Arrhythmias, Cardiac / therapy*
  • Brugada Syndrome
  • Cardiac Conduction System Disease
  • Echocardiography / methods
  • Electrocardiography* / methods
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Heart Conduction System / abnormalities
  • Heart Defects, Congenital / diagnosis*
  • Heart Defects, Congenital / physiopathology
  • Heart Defects, Congenital / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Male