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A Journal on Sports Medicine

Official Journal of the Italian Sports Medicine Federation
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Medicina dello Sport 2008 December;61(4):477-85

language: English, Italian

Utility of QT dispersion in sports medicine

Francavilla V. C. 1, Abrignani M. 2, Braschi A. 2, Francavilla G. 1

1 Cattedra di Medicina dello Sport, Università degli Studi di Palermo, Palermo, Italia
2 Ospedale S. Antonio Abate, Trapani, Italia


Aim. Interlead variability of ventricular repolarization duration, defined as the difference between the maximum QT interval and the minimum QT interval as measured from the 12-lead electrocardiogram, has been suggested to give information about the spatial differences in myocardial recovery time and to measure myocardial repolarization inhomogeneity. The measurement of QT dispersion (QTd) in the surface electrocardiogram has been proposed as a non invasive method for assessing inhomogeneity of myocardial repolarization and has been linked to an increased risk of arrhythmic cardiac death. Several studies have evaluated QTd in specific patient populations and have reached conflicting conclusions regarding its clinical significance. The present study investigated if left ventricular hypertrophy in athletes is associated with higher values of QT dispersion.
Methods. The authors evaluated 65 athletes and examined QT dispersion and the relationship between QTd and the presence or absence of left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH). The mean value of QTd in athletes with left ventricular hypertrophy did not significantly differ from athletes without hypertrophy.
Results and conclusion. The results suggest that in athletes an increased left ventricular mass doesn’t lead to an increased QTd, confirming not pathological nature of the so-called “athlete’s heart”.

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