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Jornal de Pediatria

Print version ISSN 0021-7557


NISLI, Kemal et al. Electrocardiographic markers for the early detection of cardiac disease in patients with beta-thalassemia major. J. Pediatr. (Rio J.) [online]. 2010, vol.86, n.2, pp.159-162. ISSN 0021-7557.

OBJECTIVE: To comparatively evaluate P-wave dispersion (PWD) in patients with β-thalassemia major (TM) and healthy control subjects for the early prediction of arrhythmia risk. METHODS: Eighty-one children with β-TM, aged 4-19 years, and 74 healthy children (control group) underwent routine electrocardiography and transthoracic echocardiography for cardiac evaluation. PWD was calculated as the difference between the maximum and the minimum P-wave duration. RESULTS: There was a statistically significant difference between study and control groups in peak early (E) mitral inflow velocity and E/late (A) velocity ratio. Maximum P-wave duration and PWD were found to be significantly higher in β-TM patients than in control subjects. CONCLUSIONS: Increased PWD in our β-TM patients might be related to depression of intra-atrial conduction due to atrial dilatation and increased sympathetic activity. These patients should be closely followed up for risk of life-threatening arrhythmias.

Keywords : Thalassemia major; P-wave dispersion; ferritin; cardiac involvement.

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