COVID-19: Transient Sinus Bradycardia May Increase Mortality Risk

Abnormal electrocardiogram from a 78 year old woman showinga sinus bradycardia at a rate of 28 beats per minute. Abnormal electrocardiogram from a 78 year old woman showing a sinus bradycardia at a rate of 28 beats per minute.
Researchers investigate the potential prognostic predictor of TSB on COVID-19 mortality as well as the demographic and characteristics of this population.

The following article is a part of conference coverage from the American College of Cardiology’s 70th Annual Scientific Session & Expo is being held virtually from May 15 to 17, 2021. The team at Cardiology Advisor will be reporting on the latest news and research conducted by clinicians and scientists in the field. Check back for more from the ACC 2021 .

Transient sinus bradycardia (TSB) on hospital admission in patients with COVID-19 is a predictor of the need for mechanical ventilation and the possibility of mortality, according to research presented at the American College of Cardiology 2021 Annual Meeting, held online from May 15 to May 17, 2021.

To evaluate the demographic characteristics of patients with COVID-19 and TBS as well as the potential prognostic indicator of TSB for COVID-19 mortality, researchers conducted a retrospective cohort study of adults with confirmed COVID-19 and a heart rate under 60/min.

The total study cohort included 490 adults of whom 25.9% (n=127) presented with documented TSB on hospital admission (mean age 65 years; 73 women and 54 men). A total of 75 patients died, and 158 were discharged alive. Demographically, the majority were Latinx (41.7%) and Black (37%), and hypertension was the most common cardiovascular comorbidity (70%).

TSB was significantly associated with the risk of intubation (odds ratio [OR] 1.722; P =.0411). The association with mortality (OR 0.6383; P =.0523) was not statistically significant.

Logistic correlation showed that the presence of TSB on admission was correlated significantly with hemodialysis, the need for mechanical ventilation, and mortality (log-likelihood ratio 6.503, 3.860, and 4.166, respectively).

“To our knowledge, this is the first study to show that TSB in patients presenting with COVID-19, can be used as an independent predictor for the prognosis and outcome of the disease,” the researchers concluded.


Farouji I, Chan KH, Damati A, et al. Is bradycardia a prognostic indicator of COVID-19 mortality? A single center retrospective cohort analysis. Presented at: American College of Cardiology (ACC) 2021 Annual Meeting; May 15-17, 2021. Abstract 2275.

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