Context: Electrocardiographic (ECG) abnormalities are common following subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH). It probably represents cardiovascular stress after SAH. Aims: The purpose of this study was to assess cortisol dynamics in relation to the ECG abnormality and disease course of SAH. Settings and Design: The study follows a consecutive cohort of aneurysmal SAH patients, who underwent surgery within 72 hours of onset, and they were followed up for 10 days. Materials and Methods: Serum cortisols, cortisol-binding globulin (CGB), adenocorticotropic hormone were measured (between 08.00-09.00 hours) preoperatively and then on postoperative days (PODs) 2, 4, 7, and 10. Electrocardiographs (ECG) were recorded on initial assessment and after surgery on daily basis in ICU. ECG abnormalities will be followed up by measurement of cardiac troponin T to quantify the myocyte necrosis. Statistical Analysis Used: Logistic regression analysis using commercial available software STATA 9. Results: A total of 44 patients (20 M and 24 F) were eligible for the cohort analysis. Average patient age is 52.02 years (52.02 ± 11.23), and 86% (6/44) arrived with World Federation of Neurosurgical Society Scale grade 3 or better. The ECG abnormality was found in 10 cases (22.7%), but the abnormal TnT (>1 μg/l) were found in eight cases, and two cases contribute to the mortality. The ECG abnormalities are significantly associated with total cortisol on day 4 (P < 0.05) and free cortisol on day 2 (P = 0.0065). Conclusions: Elevated levels of morning cortisol within the first four days after surgery are associated with the ECG abnormality.
Key words: Aneurismal subarachnoid hemorrhage, cortisol dynamic, Electrocardiographic abnormality, neurological deficits, outcome.