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Effect of heavy metals on ventricular repolarization and depolarization in the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) traffic enforcers' health study.


Zypher Jude G. Regencia,
Godofreda V. Dalmacion,
Emmanuel  S. Baja

Related Institution

Exposure Assessment, Epidemiology, and Risk Lab, Institute of Clinical Epidemiology - National Institutes of Health Manila - University of the Philippines Manila

Philippine Council for Health Research and Development - Department of Science and Technology

Publication Information

Publication Type
Publication Sub Type
Journal Article, Original
Project Title
Heavy Metals, Black Carbon, Inflammation, Blood Pressure, and Lung Function: Exposure Assessment of Traffic Enforcers of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA)
Archives of Environmental & Occupational Health
Eight times a year (8x/year)
Publication Date
December- 2020


We examined the relationships between blood heavy metals [cadmium (B-Cd), mercury (B-Hg), and lead (B-Pb)] and heart rate-corrected QT interval (QTc), JT interval (JTc), and QRS complex duration (QRSc), electrocardiogram markers of ventricular repolarization and depolarization among 60 traffic enforcers in the MMDA traffic enforcers' health study. We fitted regression models to estimate the mean change effect on QTc, JTc, and QRSc, of B-Cd, B-Hg, and B-Pb concentrations, adjusted for potential confounding factors. We looked at effect modification by sex and smoking status. An interquartile range increase in B-Cd (0.9 μg/L) was related to a 6.6% increase in mean QRSc [95% confidence interval (CI): 2.5, 10.8], and a 1.7% increase in mean QTc (95% CI: 0.2, 3.3). We also found that the associations between B-Cd and QRSc and QTc were higher among participants who were never smokers than ever smokers. Moreover, the association between B-Cd and QRSc was also higher among males than females.

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