Invited commentary: Sex-steroid hormones and qt-interval duration
In this issue of the Journal, Zhang et al. (Am J Epidemiol. 2011;174(4):403-411) make a substantial contribution to research in the area of hormonal influences on cardiac repolarization by demonstrating an inverse association between testosterone levels and the Bazett's adjusted QT interval (QTc) and RR-adjusted QT interval in men but not in postmenopausal women. They suggest that testosterone levels might explain the difference in QTc-interval duration between men and women and could contribute to population variability in QTc-interval duration among men. In this commentary, the gender difference and the role of testosterone in human cardiac repolarization are addressed. In addition, the gender differences in the congenital long-QT syndrome, drug-induced ventricular arrhythmias, and sudden cardiac death are discussed.