DOI: 10.1161/circ.148.suppl_1.15659 ISSN: 0009-7322

Abstract 15659: Bupropion Overdose Requiring Veno-Arterial Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation

Stephanie Golob, Peter Ting, Kyle Pires, Vanessa Soetanto, Benjamin Pagano, Kah-Loon Wan, Sylvie Hall, Lauren Bianco, Joseph Hawkins, Hannah Schimmer, Victoria Yunaev, William Howe, Jessica Landau, Allison Greco, Radu Postelnicu, Rafael Harari, Silas Smith, James Horowitz, David Park, Norma Keller, Sripal Bangalore, Stuart Katz, Carlos Alviar
  • Physiology (medical)
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

Introduction: Bupropion is a monocyclic antidepressant that inhibits dopamine and norepinephrine reuptake, with significant risk cardiotoxicity in overdose cases.

Case: A 32-year-old transgender man with a history of Human Immunodeficiency Virus (on anti-retroviral therapy), poly-substance use disorder, and depression presented with an intentional bupropion overdose. On arrival the patient was noted to have seizures and a decreased mental status. He was intubated and treated with anti-epileptic medication. Initial EKG was sinus tachycardia with a QTc of 456 milliseconds. Transthoracic echocardiogram (TTE) showed severely reduced left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) that worsened over a 6 hour period from 40% of 25%. Serial EKGs showed progressive QTc prolongation to 635 milliseconds. Cardiac catheterization demonstrated angiographically normal coronary arteries and a Cardiac Index of 2.5 L/min/m 2 . Due to the rapidly prolonging QTc and the significant risk of ventricular tachycardia (VT), the decision was to proceed with Veno-Arterial Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (VA-ECMO) cannulation after a multidisciplinary shock team discussion. A few hours after cannulation, patient suffered hemodynamically unstable VT, requiring electrical cardioversion (DCCV) with brief return to sinus rhythm (SR) and with subsequent VT recurrence, that responded to lidocaine and repeat DCCV. ECG normalized and the patient was decannulated from VA ECMO on hospital day 4. Repeat TTE showed recovery of LVEF to 60%. The patient was extubated and discharged to psychiatric rehabilitation.

Conclusion: Cardiogenic shock and ventricular arrhythmias are well recognized complications from bupropion toxicity likely due to gap junction inhibition. VA ECMO cannulation should be considered as part of multidisciplinary team assessment for patients at high risk for hemodynamic or electrical collapse in toxidromes with marked cardiotoxicity.

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