Objective: Neonatal arrhythmias are not uncommon; however, they rarely cause hemodynamic compromise. This paper aims to study the etiology, spectrum and outcome of neonates with arrhythmias who presented to a pediatric department.Methods: All neonates, either inborn or brought to the pediatric emergency with rhythm disorders, between August 1999 to August 2002, were included prospectively. Evaluation including a search for secondary causes of rhythm disorder and a chest X-ray, standard 12-lead electrocardiography and echocardiography in all. The management required in each and the outcomes were noted.Results: Nine neonates were identified, of which 4 were inborn. Tachycardia was seen in 8 neonates, and bradycardia in only one. Three neonates had an antenatal onset of arrhythmias; in the rest it was postnatal in onset. Five neonates had a secondary rhythm disorder, secondary to metabolic derangements in 4 and a cardiac mass in 1. Five had ventricular arrhythmias, and 5 had hemodynamic compromise due to the arrhythmia. The outcome was poor in 4 and was related to the underlying illness.Conclusion: Tachyarrhythmia is more common than bradyarrhythmia in the neonate. Arrhythmias secondary to various metabolic causes are more common than primary rhythm disorders.
Key wordsNeonatal Arrhythmias Tachycardia Ventricular Diseases Metabolic Hyperkalemia
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