Testosterone use and shorter electrocardiographic QT interval duration in men living with and without HIV

P. G. Hiremath, F. Bhondoekhan, S. A. Haberlen, H. Ashikaga, F. J. Palella, G. D’Souza, M. J. Budoff, L. A. Kingsley, A. S. Dobs, W. S. Post, E. Z. Soliman, T. T. Brown, K. C. Wu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Objectives: Testosterone usage (T-use) may alter risk factors for sudden cardiac death in men living with HIV (MLWH). Electrocardiographic QT interval prolongation, which could potentiate ventricular arrhythmias, has previously been associated with HIV infection and, separately, with low testosterone levels. We investigated whether T-use shortens the QT interval duration in MLWH and HIV-uninfected men. Methods: We utilized data from the Multicenter AIDS Cohort Study, a prospective, longitudinal study of HIV infection among men who have sex with men. Multivariable linear regression analyses were used to evaluate associations between T-use and corrected QT interval (QTc) duration. Results: Testosterone usage was more common in MLWH compared with HIV-uninfected men (19% vs. 9%). In a multivariable regression analysis, T-use was associated with a 5.7 ms shorter QT interval [95% confidence interval (CI): −9.5 to −1.9; P = 0.003). Furthermore, stronger associations were observed for prolonged duration of T-use and recent timing of T-use. Conclusions: This study is the first known analysis of T-use and QTc interval in MLWH. Overall, our data demonstrate that recent T-use is associated with a shorter QTc interval. Increased T-use duration above a threshold of ≥ 50% of visits in the preceding 5 years was associated with a shorter QTc interval while lesser T-use duration was not.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)418-421
Number of pages4
JournalHIV Medicine
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2021


  • HIV
  • QT interval
  • testosterone usage

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Infectious Diseases
  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Health Policy


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