Rate Control Therapy

Rapid and irregular activation of the atria causes arrhythmia absoluta, i.e. an absolute irregular RR interval. Many patients suffer from fast heart rates during AF. Rapid ventricular rate can be slowed using drugs that slow the AV nodal conduction. B blockers, calcium channel antagonists, and digitalis are the most commonly used substances. Several of the antiarrhythmic drugs used for rhythm control also slow ventricular rate. When rate can not be controlled by drug therapy, implantation of a ventricular pacemaker and ablation of the AV node may be required in rare patients.