Computer quantitation of Q-T and terminal T wave (aT-eT) intervals during exercise: Methodology and results in normal men

Jacqueline O'Donnell, Suzanne B. Knoebel, D. Eugene Lovelace, Paul L. McHenry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


Computer-quantitaied measurements of the Q-T interval, the Q-T/Q-Tc ratio (Q-T/corrected Q-T) and the terminal T wave (apex to end of T [aT-eT] interval) were evaluated in resting and exercise electrocardiograms of 130 normal men with a mean age of 40 years. Pseudo-orthogonal, bipolar X, Y and Z axis leads were recorded during treadmill exercise testing, and 25 consecutive QRS-T complexes from standing rest and three exercise stages were computer-averaged. The Q-T interval, Q-T/Q-Tc ratio and aT-eT interval measurements were then computed from the composite QRS-T complexes. Measurements were compared in the X and Z axis leads only, because the Y lead proved to be too noisy for accurate interpretation. A correlation coefficient of 0.9830 resulted between measurements made manually from the plotted, composite QRS-T complexes and those made by computer. No significant differences, in the paired sense, were found between any of the measurements. Measurements made on the Z axis lead were consistently longer than those made on the X axis lead; however, the differences in the measurements remained constant across all stages of exercise. A Q-T/Q-Tc ratio of greater than 1.08, previously reported to be a reliable indicator of coronary disease, was observed in the majority of our normal subjects during exercise. Although the Q-T interval is substantially influenced by many factors, the aT-eT interval proved not to be age- or heart rate-dependent, lt appears that the aT-eT interval can be measured with a high degree of reliability during exercise and it may prove to be a relatively specific indicator of repolarization alterations that occur with myocardial ischemia.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1168-1172
Number of pages5
JournalThe American journal of cardiology
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1981

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

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