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by Dr Sridevi Sira
Mahalingappa, Professor Femi
Oyebode and Dr Patrick
Last reviewed: June 2017
mental illness is associated with increased morbidity and
mortality, primarily due to premature cardiovascular disease.
The cardiovascular events are strongly linked
to non-modifiable as well as modifiable risk factors, such as
obesity, dyslipidemia, diabetes, hypertension and smoking (Saravane et al, 2009).
There is also evidence of an association between severe mental
illness and the modifiable risk factors in heart disease. Indeed,
studies have reported evidence of increased risk of heart disease
in patients with depression (De Hert et al,
2009). Many psychotropic medications are also associated with
Evidence suggests that computerised readings of ECGs are not
always accurate (Willems et al,1991).
It is therefore essential that psychiatrists are aware of the
potential adverse effects of psychotropic medication on the heart
and that they improve their skills in reading and
In this module we will consider:
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