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ECG non-specific ST-T and QTc abnormalities in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus compared with rheumatoid arthritis
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  • Published on:
    Prolonged QT interval and atherosclerosis in systemic lupus erythematosus
    • Ricardo Rivera-Lopez, Medical Doctor Cardiology Department. Complejo Hospitalario Universitario Granada. Spain
    • Other Contributors:
      • Juan Jimenez-Jaimez, Ph Doctor
      • Juan Jimenez-Alonso, Ph Doctor

    Geraldino-Pardillaet al.1 recently published an interesting article analysing one of the most important aspects of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE): the risk of cardiovascular disease, a leading cause of death in SLE patients. Although there were no healthy control group to compare, and the SLE patient sample size was limited, their conclusions are clinically valuable and should be taken into consideration.

    The usefulness of the corrected QT interval (QTc) as a marker of atherosclerosis risk is well-established in the general population and in some sub-groups with high cardiovascular risk. QTc prolongation is also linked to cardiovascular events and mortality during follow-up2-3. QTc interval prolongation in SLE patients has been described in previous studies4.However, no data on the clinical repercussions of this finding are available. Our research group recently published a paper on the positive correlation between QTc interval prolongation in SLE patients and higher arterial stiffness measured by pulse-wave velocity5. The association was independent of hypertension and age. Our data complement those published by Geraldino-Pardilla et al.1, suggesting an independent association between QTc interval prolongation and subclinical atherosclerosis. However, there is no evidence of the long-term clinical effects of this association. Prospective studies with large sample sizes and long follow-up periods are required to study the potential long-term effects. In any case...

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    Conflict of Interest:
    None declared.