We review the clinical and genetic disorders associated with exercise-induced ventricular arrhythmias in patients with normal hearts. Foremost are those with catecholaminergic polymorphic ventricular tachycardia due to abnormalities in either the ryanodine receptor 2 genes () or the calsequestrin genes (). These patients manifest ventricular premature beats and polymorphic ventricular tachycardia in response to exercise or on exposure to catecholamines. A great deal of basic information has been accumulated suggesting that these arrhythmias are caused by abnormalities in Ca2+ metabolism. The ensuing cytosolic Ca2+ overload results in delayed after-depolarizations and extrasystolic Ca2+ waves, leading to polymorphic ventricular tachycardia. Most of these patients will respond to beta-blocker therapy but a significant minority (30%) will require a defibrillator. Advances in genetic testing allow better understanding of this syndrome.


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  • Article Type: Review Article
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