UMEM Educational Pearls

Left Ventricular Hypertrophy & Arrhythmias: Any Association?

Associations between left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH) and both supraventricular (SVT)/ventricular arrhythmias (VT/VF) have previously been reported.

A recent review & meta-analysis of 10 studies (27,141 patients) revealed the following:

    - Incidence of SVT was 11% with LVH compared to 1% without (p <0.001)

    - LVH patients had 3.4-fold greater odds of developing SVT

    - Incidence of VT/VF was 5.5% with LVH compared to 1.2% without (p <0.001)

    - LVH patients has 2.8 greater odds of developing VT/VF

The reason for increased arrhythmogenicity in LVH is not clearly understood.

A consistently observed abnormality in LVH is non-uniform propagation of the action potential throughout the myocardium, which sets the stage for arrhythmias based on early or delayed afterdepolarizations.

Given the heterogeneity in this meta-analysis further research between LVH & sustained arrhythmias is needed to infer true causality.


Saurav C, Chirag B, et al. Meta-Analysis of Left Ventricular Hypertrophy and Sustained Arrhythmias. The American Journal of Cardiology. Volume 114, Issue 7, Pages 1049-1052 (1 October 2014).