The treatment of ventricular fibrillation (VF) by means of automatic implantable cardioverter defibrillators (AICD) poses many severe problems and limitations at the present time. In order to overcome these problems, we propose a totally new way to terminate VF or ventricular sustained tachycardia (VST). Our proposal consists of replacing the electric shock, which is dangerous, delayed, and sometimes ineffective, with a "chemical" shock: i.e., a chemical bolus retroperfused in the coronary sinus (CS) immediately after VF arises. The possible device is hypothesized and preliminary investigations in animals, performed to verify the theoretical assumption, are presented. In rabbits, and in larger animals (sheep and swine). Drugs were perfused in the coronary bed: lidocaine was used in 86\% and bretylium tosylate in 14\% of the animals. The results were: lidocaine immediately terminated VF in 100\% and sinus rhythm was restored in rabbits; lidocaine terminated VF in VST in sheep; and in swine, bretylium immediately produced sinus rhythm in one case; in another one, only delayed sinus rhythm was achieved but lasted a short time; in the last case ventricular tachycardia at 128 beats/min appeared. Because new drugs, which are really "defibrillating" drugs, are available (bretylium tosylate, bethanidine, clofilium, tricyclic antidepressants, phenotiazine derivatives), we plan to investigate these defibrillating drugs in isolated hearts, found in suitable animals like dogs (sheep and swine are difficult to defibrillate) and in humans during routine electropharmacological studies.
Implantable pharmacological defibrillator (AIPhD): preliminary investigations in animals / L. Cammilli;A. Mugelli;G. Grassi;L. Alcidi;G. Melissano;G. Menegazzo;V. Silvestri. - In: PACING AND CLINICAL ELECTROPHYSIOLOGY. - ISSN 0147-8389. - STAMPA. - 14:(1991), pp. 381-386.