Four patients with recurrent, symptomatic ventricular tachycardia (VT) refractory to conventional antiarrhythmic agents were given flecainide acetate to control arrhythmias. Ventricular stimulation studies were performed in all patients before and 1 to 2 weeks after initiation of oral flecainide therapy. Before flecainide, all patients had easily inducible VT that was morphologically identical to their spontaneously occurring arrhythmia. Flecainide increased the mean PR interval (from 0.17 to 0.23 second), mean QRS duration (from 0.08 to 0.12 second) and mean ventricular effective refractory period (from 235 to 270 ms). Mean corrected QT interval did not change (0.51 second). In 2 patients, VT could not be induced during follow-up stimulation studies. One patient has been treated successfully for 10 months, with no clinically apparent episodes of VT. One patient had recurrent nonsustained VT and was withdrawn from the study as a treatment failure after 6 months of therapy. Two patients had inducible, polymorphous VT that degenerated into ventricular fibrillation that required 2 countershocks before the successful restoration of sinus rhythm. One of these patients had VT stimulation by atrial pacing at a cycle length of 320 ms in the postflecainide electrophysiologic study. VT was not inducible by atrial pacing during this patient's preflecainide study. Thus, sustained oral flecainide administration may precipitate serious electrical instability in susceptible patients, and ventricular stimulation studies and other clinical variables may be useful in selecting patients with recurrent VT who may benefit or may be endangered by oral flecainide therapy.