OPEN Research Support

Anja Friis Elliott
psychiatric department, Esbjerg

Projekt styring
Projekt status    Open
Data indsamlingsdatoer
Start 01.09.2019  
Slut 01.06.2023  

Prolonged QTc in psychiatric in-patients receiving psychotropic medication

Short summary

The project aims to investigate whether 300 inpatients admitted at psychiatric departments have prolonged QTc interval, which can lead to an increased risk of cardiac arrhythmias, when receiving psychotropic medicine and whether or not there is a risk of cardiac arrhythmias increases with ingestion of the psychotropic medicine. It is also being investigated whether the risk of heart rhythm disorders can be reduced.


Patients treated with QTc prolongating psychotropic medication have a risk of cardiac arrhythmia, however small. Therefore, patients are monitored with ECG (Electro cardiogram) at admission, to screen patients for prolonged QTc interval. If patients have prolonged QTc interval it is recommended to reduce doses, terminating or use a different medication with less risk of prolonging the QTc interval. Also, it is recommended that patients with risk factors for prolonged QTc do not receive QTc prolonging psychotropic medication.

The aim of this present study is to examine,

1) whether QTc interval changes at admission,

2) if prolonged QTC interval decrease when after alterations in medication and

3) whether patients in increased risk of prolonged QTc interval initiate treatment with QTc prolongating medicine.

Description of the cohort

All records of patients admitted to the following Danish psychiatric departments: Esbjerg, Vejle, Svendborg and Aabenraa are eligible. Patients records are included from the 1st of March 2019 until 300 patients are included.

Inclusion criteria: Records on patients with a psychiatric diagnosis, being hospitalized more than two weeks, receiving QTc prolonging medication or initiating QTc prolonging medication at admission.

Exclusion criteria: Insufficient patients-records about medication or missing ECG.

Data and biological material

Health data will be registered from patients' records. It includes age, gender, psychiatric diagnosis, potassium level and diagnosis of cardio vascular disease. Additional psychotropic medication and doses will also be recorded. Psychotropic medication will be divided into two groups: a non-prolonging QTc medication group and a QTC prolonging medication group. Psychotropic QTc prolonging medication is defined as below by the Danish Psychiatry Association

Collaborating researchers and departments

Department of Cardiology, Esbjerg Hospital