Asystole and ventricular fibrillation associated with cocaine intoxication

Chest. 1984 Jan;85(1):132-3. doi: 10.1378/chest.85.1.132.


We discuss a patient with cocaine intoxication in whom the initial presentation was that of asystole and ventricular fibrillation. Cocaine has a direct toxic action on the heart and also sensitizes cardiac tissue to the action of catecholamines. Cocaine intoxication should be considered in any patient with unexplained cardiac arrest or ventricular arrhythmias.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Arrhythmias, Cardiac / chemically induced*
  • Cocaine / poisoning*
  • Female
  • Heart Arrest / chemically induced*
  • Humans
  • Ventricular Fibrillation / chemically induced*


  • Cocaine