Background: The hemodialysis procedure may play a role in the elevated risk of sudden cardiac death seen in hemodialysis patients. Methods: Microvolt T wave alternans, a promising noninvasive electrophysiological test developed to measure sudden cardiac death risk, was used to test the hypotheses that high-risk hemodialysis patients commonly manifest cardiac electrophysiology that is associated with higher sudden death risk in nondialysis patients and that the hemodialysis procedure modifies cardiac electrophysiology in a manner predisposing to malignant ventricular arrhythmias. To test this hypothesis, microvolt T wave alternans tracings were done in 9 patients before and immediately after an early week hemodialysis session. Results: 7 of 9 individuals had non-negative (i.e. higher risk) tracings either before or after hemodialysis. 2 of 4 subjects with tracings initially negative before hemodialysis became non-negative after hemodialysis. Conclusion: This pilot study provides the first objective preliminary evidence using microvolt T wave alternans that high-risk hemodialysis patients commonly exhibit abnormal cardiac repolarization and that hemodialysis treatments can acutely alter repolarization in a potentially harmful manner.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||6|
|State||Published - Sep 1 2007|
- Sudden cardiac death
- T wave alternans
ASJC Scopus subject areas