Effects of haemodialysis on maximum P wave duration and P wave dispersion

Zoltán Szabó, György Kakuk, Tibor Fülöp, János Mátyus, József Balla, István Kárpáti, Attila Juhász, Csaba Kun, Zsolt Karányi, István Lorincz

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Background. Analysing a 12-lead surface electro-cardiogram (ECG), the inter-lead variability of the P wave interval, i.e. P wave dispersion, is defined as the difference between the maximum and the minimum P wave duration. Our aim was to assess the effect of haemodialysis on P wave duration and dispersion in non-diabetic patients with end-stage renal failure on chronic haemodialysis. Methods. Twenty-eight patients (14 men and 14 women, mean age 58 ± 16 years, average duration of dialysis 4.5 ± 2.8 years) were examined. Prior to haemodialysis, echocardiography (M-mode and two-dimensional) was performed. Haemodialysis sessions were carried out with polysulfone dialysers and bicarbonate dialysate fluids. Twelve-lead ECGs were recorded at the beginning, 15 and 30 min after starting dialysis, at the end, and 2 h after completion of each session. Ionic parameters were checked during the study. P wave durations were measured with calipers in three consecutive complexes of each lead by one observer. Results. P maximum was 58 ± 16 ms at the beginning, and showed an increase by the end of dialysis to 98 ± 8.9 ms (P < 0.0001). Pre-dialysis P dispersion was 23 ± 10 ms and increased to 41 ± 16 ms by the end of the sessions (P < 0.0001). In patients with a left atrial diameter larger than 45 mm, P dispersion increased from 23 ± 11 to 53 ± 10 ms (P < 0.0003) by the end of the sessions. Conclusions. According to our results, ionic imbalance and dialysis itself may cause changes in P duration and dispersion simultaneously.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1634-1638
Number of pages5
JournalNephrology Dialysis Transplantation
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1 2002



  • Atrial fibrillation
  • Haemodialysis
  • P wave dispersion
  • P wave duration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nephrology
  • Transplantation

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