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No association between anti-Borrelia immunoglobulin G and cardiac disorders: results from a population based sample
  1. H Völzke1,
  2. B Wolff2,
  3. L Guertler3,
  4. G Daeschlein4,
  5. A Kramer4,
  6. J Lüdemann5,
  7. M Dörr2,
  8. J Kors6,
  9. S B Felix2,
  10. U John1
  1. 1Institute of Epidemiology and Social Medicine, Ernst Moritz Arndt University Greifswald, Germany
  2. 2Department of Internal Medicine B, Ernst Moritz Arndt University Greifswald
  3. 3Loeffler Institute of Medical Microbiology, Ernst Moritz Arndt University Greifswald
  4. 4Institute of Hygiene and Environmental Medicine, Ernst Moritz Arndt University Greifswald
  5. 5Institute of Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine, Institute of Clinical Chemistry, Ernst Moritz Arndt University Greifswald
  6. 6Department of Medical Informatics, Erasmus Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands
  1. Correspondence to:
    Dr Henry Völzke
    Institute of Epidemiology and Social Medicine, Ernst Moritz Arndt University, Walther Rathenau Str. 48, D-17487 Greifswald, Germany;

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Lyme disease is a systemic disorder caused by Borrelia burgdorferi. While acute cardiac manifestations of borrelioses are not doubted, chronic cardiac consequences are currently under investigation. The aim of this study was to explore associations between anti-Borrelia immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibodies and the risk of cardiac disorders.


The Study of Health in Pomerania is a cross sectional study in North East Germany. A random sample from the population aged 20–79 years was drawn. The study population comprised 4310 subjects. All participants gave informed written consent. The study was approved by the local ethics committee.

Sociodemographic and clinical characteristics were assessed and medication was classified according to the anatomic, therapeutic, and chemical code. Anti-Borrelia IgG were determined by enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) (Virion, Rüschlikon, Switzerland). A titre of > 5 IU/ml was considered elevated and a titre of > 10 IU/ml was considered positive. Of the 4310 subjects, 36 refused to have blood withdrawn or had missing data on Borrelia serology. In all, 4274 individuals (2174 women) were available for the present analysis.

Twelve lead ECGs were processed by the modular ECG analysis system (MEANS). For this study, P, PR and QRS duration and data on definite left bundle branch block (LBBB), right bundle branch block (RBBB), incomplete RBBB, left …

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