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Datapoints: Prevalence of QT Prolongation Among Veterans With Severe Mental Illness
Eileen M. Stock, Ph.D.; Laurel A. Copeland, Ph.D., M.P.H.; Ruth L. Bush, M.D., M.P.H.; John E. Zeber, Ph.D., M.H.A.
Psychiatric Services 2013; doi: 10.1176/appi.ps.201300212
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Except for Dr. Bush, the authors are affiliated with the Center for Applied Health Research, which is jointly sponsored by the Central Texas Veterans Health Care System and Scott & White Healthcare, 2102 Birdcreek Dr., Temple, TX 76502 (e-mail: eileen.stock@va.gov). All authors are affiliated with Texas A&M Health Science Center, Bryan, Texas. Amy M. Kilbourne, Ph.D., M.P.H., and Tami L. Mark, Ph.D., are editors of this column.

Copyright © 2013 by the American Psychiatric Association


The QT interval refers to the time required for the heart to repolarize after ventricular depolarization. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued Drug Safety Communications on drugs associated with QT prolongation and fatal ventricular arrhythmias. Antidepressants received attention after the 2011 FDA communication on citalopram, often prescribed off-label for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

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Figure 1 Prevalence of QT prolongation among Veterans Health Administration patients, October 2005 to September 2009a

a95% confidence intervals reported in parentheses. PTSD, posttraumatic stress disorder




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