Background: Although previous studies have documented a variety of electrocardiogram (ECG) abnormalities in obesity, P-wave alterations, which represent an increased risk for atrial arrhythmia, have not been studied very well in these patients. The aim of the present study was to evaluate P-wave duration and P dispersion (Pd) in obese subjects, and to investigate the relationship between P-wave measurements, and the clinical and echocardiographic variables.
Methods: The study population consisted of 52 obese and 30 normal weight control subjects. P-wave duration and P-wave dispersion were calculated on the 12-lead ECG. As echocardiographic variables, left atrial diameter (LAD), left ventricular end-diastolic, and end-systolic diameters (LVDD and LVSD), left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF), interventricular septum thickness (IVST), left ventricular posterior wall thickness (LVPWT), and left ventricular mass (LVM) of the obese and the control subjects were measured by means of transthoracic echocardiography.
Results: There were statistically significant differences between obese and controls as regards to Pmax (maximum P-wave duration) and Pd (P dispersion) (P < 0.001 and P < 0.001, respectively). Pmin (minimum P wave duration) was similar in both groups. Correlation analysis showed that Pd in the obese patients was related to any the clinical and echocardiographic parameters including BMI, LAD, LVDD, IVST, LVPWT, and LVM.
Conclusion: Our data suggest that obesity affects P-wave dispersion and duration, and changes in P dispersion may be closely related to the clinical and the echocardiographic parameters such as BMI, LAD, IVST, LVPWT, and LVM.