An alcoholic may experience a prolongation of the QTc interval. Prolongation of the QTc interval may be associated with sudden death.

Patient selection: alcoholic on 30th day of abstinence



(1) QTc interval in msec

(2) coefficient of variation of the R-R interval (CVRR)


Autonomic dysfunction was present if the CVRR < 80^ of predicted.


Risk factors for prolongation of the QTc compared to normal controls:

(1) alcoholic

(2) autonomic dysfunction


The risk can be further increased by drugs or comorbid conditions that can increase the QTc.

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