Adenosine reduces the normal flow of the
electrical impulses through the
atrioventricular (AV) node of the heart.
Adenosine is used in the hospital to try to restore a
normal heart rate and rhythm when you are having an episode of
Adenosine is always given by a doctor
while you are hooked up to a heart monitor. It is given through a vein
(intravenous, or IV). Adenosine works very quickly and lasts only a short
period of time (less than 1 minute).
may be used to diagnose tachycardia or to help find the location of the
fast heart rate.
Adenosine can slow or stop a rapid heart rate if the problem is caused by an abnormal
electrical pathway in the heart.1 Adenosine will not work if the fast heart rate
has a different cause. Adenosine may only slow your heart rate for a short time
if you also have
atrial fibrillation or atrial flutter.
Adenosine is given in a hospital. Your doctor will watch you closely for any side effects.
Possible side effects include:
See Drug Reference for a full list of side effects. (Drug
Reference is not available in all systems.)
Adenosine is a quick-acting,
short-term therapy intended to convert the fast heart rhythm of a
supraventricular tachycardia (SVT) back to a normal
Complete the new medication information form (PDF)(What is a PDF document?) to help you understand this medication.
Drugs for cardiac arrhythmias (2007). Treatment Guidelines From The Medical Letter, 5(58): 51–58.
August 9, 2012
Rakesh K. Pai, MD, FACC - Cardiology, Electrophysiology
& John M. Miller, MD, FACC - Cardiology, Electrophysiology
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