Prolongation of the QTc interval in patients with cirrhosis

Authors K. Mimidis, V. Papadopoulos, K. Thomopoulos, D. Tziakas, K. Ritis, V. Dalla, S. Kotsiou,, V. Nikolopoulou, D. Hatseras, G. Kartalis.


QT interval prolongation predicts severe ventricular arrhythmias
and sudden death. The aim of this work was to
confirm the prevalence of QT interval prolongation in patients
with liver cirrhosis due to alcoholism and chronic
hepatitis B or C and define its association with the severity
of the disease. Fifty-two patients with cirrhosis (29 due to
alcohol abuse and 23 due to chronic hepatitis B or C) were
enrolled. In all patients QT interval corrected (QTc) for
ventricular heart rate was assessed along with Child-Pugh
score. QTc was found prolonged in both groups of patients
with alcoholic and postviral cirrhosis (0,471 sec, P=0,0007
and 0,461 sec, P=0,0017 respectively) with no difference
between the two groups (P=0,3142). Prolongation of the QTc
interval was statistically confirmed in Child-Pugh C and B
groups (0,489 sec, P=0,0019 and 0,480 sec, P=0,0002 respectively)
but not in Child-Pugh A group (0,445 sec,
P=0,4366). These data show that QTc interval prolongation
in cirrhotic patients refers to Child-Pugh B and C but
is independent from the etiology of cirrhosis.
Key words: QT interval, cirrhosis, alcoholism, chronic hepatitis,
hepatitis B, hepatitis C.
Original Articles