What causes cardiovascular effects in local anesthetic toxicity?

Updated: Jan 09, 2019
  • Author: Raffi Kapitanyan, MD; Chief Editor: David Vearrier, MD, MPH  more...
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Answer

Cardiovascular effects occur because these agents block sodium channels through a fast-in, slow-out mechanism that affects impulse conduction through the heart and nerve tissue. In the heart, this depresses Vmax (ie, the rate of depolarization during phase 0 of the cardiac action potential) and may lead to reentrant arrhythmias. Additionally, conduction through the sinus and atrioventricular nodes is suppressed.


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