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Anesthesia

SVT and gallbladder surgery

10/09/2008

Question:

I am going in for gallbladder surgery and I have SVT. What are the risks and are they greater because of the SVT? I take varapimile and clonidine.

Answer:

SVT = supraventricular tachycardia, a rhythm disturbance of the heart. Your medications are probably verapamil and clonidine. The best thing to do to have your risks assessed properly is to have your cardiologist communicate directly with your anesthesiologist. Second best is to have the cardiologist write a letter in which the history of your problem is fully documented, including the possible cause, the frequency and severity of episodes of arrhythmia, the treatments you have had, any complications of the condition and any complications of the treatment.

Your anesthesiologist needs this information in order to assess your anesthesia risks and to plan appropriate care for you before, during and after your procedure. This might include additional heart monitoring, having particular drugs available to treat SVT, etc.

For more information:

Go to the Anesthesia health topic, where you can:

Response by:

Gareth S Kantor, MD Gareth S Kantor, MD
Assistant Professor of Anesthesiology
School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University