Hyperbaric oxygen therapy reduces the risk of QTc interval prolongation in patients with diabetes and hard-to-heal foot ulcers

Aims: Heart rate corrected QT (QTc) interval prolongation is a risk factor associated with increased mortality.Hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBO) has previously been shown to have acute beneficial effects on QTc dispersion. The aim of this study was to evaluate long-term effects of HBO on QTc time in diabetic patients with hard-to-heal foot ulcers.Methods: In a prospective, double-blinded placebo-controlled study, patients were randomized to 40 treatment sessions with either HBO or air (placebo), at 2.5 ATA. Patients fulfilling N35 completed treatment sessions were included in the evaluation.Results: Of the initial 75 patients (38 HBO/37 placebo), two were excluded due to pacemaker use. Baseline characteristics were similar between groups. At the 2-year follow-up, QTc time was significantly shorter in the HBO compared to the placebo group (438 vs. 453 ms, p b 0.05). Further, fewer HBO treated patients had a QTctime N450 ms (22 vs. 53 %, p b 0.02). This difference seemed to be caused by a significant prolongation of the QTc interval in the placebo group (427 (419–459) at baseline vs. 456 ms (424–469) after 2 years), whereas no significant change was seen in HBO treated patients.Conclusions: HBO treatment might protect against QTc prolongation in this high-risk diabetic population.

Categories: Cardiology, Medical clinic