Until now, few studies have examined QT intervals in subjects who consume alcohol. We performed this study to evaluate the associations between alcohol consumption and the QTc interval based on a general population. A total of 11,269 adults were examined using a multistage cluster sampling method to select a representative sample of subjects aged ≥35 years. Participants were asked to provide information about their alcohol consumption, and all participants received electrocardiograms and echocardiograms. A prolonged QTc interval was defined according to the national guidelines, which specify thresholds of ≥460 ms in women and ≥450 ms in men. Patients were divided into 3 categories, based on the amount of alcohol they consumed: heavy drinkers (>15 g/day for women and >30 g/day for men), moderate drinkers (≤15 g/day for women and ≤30 g/day for men), and nondrinkers (0 g/day). The results showed that the heavy drinkers had longer QTc intervals than did the nondrinkers. Multivariate logistic regression analyses revealed that men who were heavy drinkers had approximately 1.4-fold higher odds of having a prolonged QTc interval (odds ratio 1.431, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.033 to 1.982, p = 0.031) than nondrinkers; in women, heavy drinkers had ∼2.3-fold higher odds of having a prolonged QTc interval (odds ratio 2.344, 95% CI 1.202 to 4.571, p = 0.012) than nondrinkers. Neither men nor women who were moderate drinkers exhibited a significant increase in risk for prolonged QTc interval. In conclusion, heavy alcohol consumption was found to be a risk factor for a prolonged QTc interval.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine