Role of chronic continuous intravenous lidocaine in the clinical management of patients with malignant type 3 long QT syndrome

Sahej Bains, Adi Lador, Raquel Neves, J. Martijn Bos, John R. Giudicessi, Bryan C. Cannon, Michael J. Ackerman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Background: Type 3 long QT syndrome (LQT3) is caused by pathogenic, gain-of-function variants in SCN5A leading to a prolonged action potential, ventricular ectopy, and torsades de pointes. Treatment options include pharmacotherapy, cardiac denervation, and/or device therapy. Rarely, patients with malignant LQT3 require cardiac transplantation. Objective: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the role of chronic continuous intravenous (IV) lidocaine as a therapeutic option for select patients with LQT3 refractory to standard therapy. Methods: We performed a retrospective review of patients evaluated and treated at Mayo Clinic and identified 4 of 161 patients with LQT3 (2.5%) who were refractory to standard therapies and therefore treated with IV lidocaine. Results: There were 4 patients (2 female [50%]). The median age at first IV lidocaine infusion was 2 months (interquartile range 1.5–4.8 months), and the median cumulative duration on IV lidocaine was 11.5 months (interquartile range 8.7–17.8 months). The main indication for IV lidocaine in all patients was persistent ventricular arrhythmias. Before IV lidocaine, all patients received an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator, and while on intermittent IV lidocaine, all patients underwent bilateral cardiac sympathetic denervation. Additionally, 2 (50%) patients had cardiac ablation for premature ventricular complexes. In all patients, lidocaine infusion resulted in a significant reduction of LQT3-triggered cardiac events. The main side effects of IV lidocaine observed were dizziness (n = 2, 50%) and seizures (n = 2, 50%). During follow-up, 3 of 4 (75%) patients underwent orthotopic cardiac transplantation. The remaining patient continues to receive IV lidocaine bolus for rescue as needed. Conclusion: For patients with LQT3 who are refractory to standard treatment, chronic IV lidocaine infusion can be used as a potential “bridge to transplant.”

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)81-87
Number of pages7
JournalHeart Rhythm
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2022


  • Arrhythmias
  • Genetics
  • Lidocaine
  • Long QT syndrome
  • Sudden cardiac death

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)


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