What is the role of ECG in the management of bipolar affective disorder (manic-depressive illness)?

Updated: May 06, 2018
  • Author: Stephen Soreff, MD; Chief Editor: Glen L Xiong, MD  more...
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Answer

Many of the antidepressants, especially the tricyclic agents and some of the antipsychotics, can affect the heart and cause conduction problems. Lithium also can lead to changes such as reversible flattening or inversion of T waves on electrocardiography (ECG). In older patients with bipolar disorder, or manic-depressive illness (MDI), on lithium or tricyclic antidepressant therapy, a pretreatment ECG is important.


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