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Electrocardiographic abnormalities in the first year after heart transplantation.

  • Author(s): Pickham, David;
  • Hickey, Kathleen;
  • Doering, Lynn;
  • Chen, Belinda;
  • Castillo, Carmen;
  • Drew, Barbara J
  • et al.
Abstract

Study aim

Describe ECG abnormalities in the first year following transplant surgery.

Methods

Analysis of 12-lead ECGs from heart transplant subjects enrolled in an ongoing multicenter clinical trial.

Results

585 ECGs from 98 subjects showed few with abnormal cardiac rhythm (99% of ECGs were sinus rhythm/tachycardia). A majority of subjects (69%) had either right intraventricular conduction delay (56%) or right bundle branch block (13%). A second prevalent ECG abnormality was atrial enlargement (64% of subjects) that was more commonly left atrial (55%) than right (30%).

Conclusions

Right intraventricular conduction delay or right bundle branch block is prevalent in heart transplant recipients in the first year following transplant surgery. Whether this abnormality is related to acute allograph rejection or endomyocardial biopsy procedures is the subject of the ongoing clinical trial. Atrial enlargement ECG criteria (especially, left atrial) are also common and are likely due to transplant surgery with subsequent atrial remodeling.

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