Author: Paul A Younge / Editor: Jason Kendall / Reviewers: Mohamed Elwakil, Stewart McMorran, Emma Everitt / Codes: A1 / Published: 17/11/2023

This session deals with the assessment and management of bradycardias in the emergency department (ED). The causes, clinical presentations and management for each type of bradycardia are discussed in more detail and a concluding section describes drug therapy and pacing.

After completing this session you will be able to:

  • List the causes of bradycardia
  • Describe the diagnostic criteria for the various forms of heart block
  • Distinguish between the different forms of bradycardia
  • Describe the principles of management of bradycardia
  • Judge when it is necessary to treat an individual patient with bradycardia
  • Describe the indications for pacing


  1. Resuscitation Council UK. Resuscitation Guidelines, 2021.
  2. Ghuran A, Uren N, Nolan, J. Emergency Cardiology, an Evidence Based Guide to Acute Cardiac Problems. Arnold, London 2003. ISBN 0340807199.
  3. Myerson S, Choudhury R, Mitchell A. Emergencies in Cardiology. Oxford University Press 2005. ISBN 9780856959.
  4. Livingstone M, Overton D. Sinus Bradycardia. E Medicine 2009.
  5. Laurence L. Brunton ed. Goodman & Gilmans The Pharmacological Basis of Therapeutics 11e. Mcgraw Hill, 2009.
  6. Boyd R. Glucagon for the treatment of symptomatic B-blocker overdose. Best BETs, 2003.
  7. Bradycardia. BMJ Best Practice, 2023.

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