Prolonged QTc interval and its relationship to autonomic cardiovascular reflexes in patients with cirrhosis

Loveen Puthumana, Vinay Chaudhry, Paul J. Thuluvath

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Background/Aims: We have previously shown that an abnormality in cardiac autonomic reflexes (AN) is an independent predictor of mortality in patients with chronic liver disease. Aim of this study was to determine whether there was an association between prolonged QTc interval and cardiac AN. Methods: Cardiac AN and QTc interval were determined in 130 patients (Child A 42, B 53, C 35) with alcoholic and non-alcoholic liver disease. Results: Prolonged QTc (>440 ms) was seen in 58 (Child A 30%, B 46%, C 60%, P = 0.04) patients. Autonomic tests were normal in 21%, borderline abnormal in 36% and definitely abnormal in 43%. QTc correlated with albumin (P < 0.001), prothrombin time (P = 0.003) and Child-Pugh score (P < 0.001), but not with Valsalva ratio, heart rate variation with 6 breath/min breathing, tilt table or isometric exercise. By logistic regression analysis, QTc correlated only with Child-Pugh score (P < 0.001). Mean QTc of 34 who died during the follow up was higher than survivors. Cox regression analysis showed that only Child-Pugh score and AN were independent predictors of mortality. Conclusions: Prolonged QTc seen in liver disease is independent of their cardiac autonomic function, but is related to the severity of the liver disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)733-738
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Hepatology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1 2001


  • Cardiac autonomic reflexes
  • Child-Pugh score
  • Prolonged QTc

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hepatology


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