Brugada Syndrome – Report of Familial Occurrence Diagnosed in the Emergency Department

DOI: 10.2478/jce-2020-0001


Introduction: Brugada syndrome represents the clinical manifestation of a rare disease with genetic etiology. The syndrome is characterized by ventricular dysrhythmias associated with syncope or sudden cardiac death in the lack of any structural cardiac disease. The diagnosis of Brugada syndrome is established if a type 1 electrocardiographic (ECG) pattern of STsegment and QRS morphology is present, in association with certain clinical manifestations and/or familial history. Case presentation: A 31-year-old male patient, without any medical history, presented in the emergency department (ED) of a clinical center. His only complaints consisted in palpitations, chest discomfort, and emotional stress related to the recent death of his wife. Earlier on the same day, his wife, a 25-year-old female was brought via emergency medical services (EMS) to the ED after presenting ventricular fibrillation. The female patient presented a long term history of chest pain and one year prior to this episode she presented idiopathic ventricular fibrillation, for which she had undergone implantation of an automated cardioverter defibrillator. As the couple were cousins, the EMS specialist suspected the presence of a familial cardiac disorder. The electrocardiogram of the male patient revealed a coved-type ST-segment elevation of 4 mm in leads V1–V3 compatible with type 1 Brugada syndrome. Conclusion: In case of Brugada syndrome, a genetic disorder associated with increased risk of SCD, the patient’s first-degree relatives should be investigated as well, in order to identify the presence of the syndrome and to prevent SCD. As the sole established effective therapeutic measure for patients diagnosed with Brugada syndrome, ICD implantation should be considered in order to decrease the risk of syncope and SCD. This case is particular because a rare disease with familial etiology was identified in both husband and wife, who were cousins.