Cardiology (Cardiology )

Publisher: Karger


Cardiologyí features high-quality papers from all over the world to keep its readers regularly informed of current strategies in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of heart disease. These papers not only describe but offer critical appraisals of new developments in non-invasive, invasive, diagnostic and therapeutic methods. The importance of experimental work is also acknowledged through reports covering the function and metabolism of the heart and the morphology and physiology of cardiovascular disease. Special sections in a variety of subspecialty areas reinforce the journalís value as a complete record of recent progress for all cardiologists, internists, cardiac surgeons and clinical physiologists.

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Publications in this journal

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Objective: Durable polymer sirolimus-eluting stents (DP-SES) are associated with a low risk of stent thrombosis; biodegradable polymer drug-eluting stents (BP-DES) were designed to reduce these risks. However, their benefits are still variable. Method: We undertook a meta-analysis of randomized trials identified by systematic searches of Medline, Embase, and the Cochrane Database. Results: Eleven studies (9,676 patients) with a mean follow-up of 22.6 months were included. Overall, compared with DP-SES, BP-DES significantly lowered the rate of definite or probable stent thrombosis (RR, 0.73; 95% CI, 0.55-0.97; p = 0.03; I(2) = 0.0%) due to a decreased risk of very late stent thrombosis (RR, 0.26; 95% CI, 0.11-0.63; p = 0.00; I(2) = 0.0%). However, BP-DES were associated with a comparable rate of early and late stent thrombosis. Meanwhile, BP-DES were associated with a broadly equivalent risk of target vessel revascularization (RR, 0.90; 95% CI, 0.78-1.03; p = 0.13; I(2) = 0.0%), cardiac death (RR, 0.89; 95% CI, 0.72-1.09; p = 0.24; I(2) = 0.0%), myocardial infarction (RR, 1.03; 95% CI, 0.84-1.26; p = 0.79; I(2) = 0.0%), and major adverse cardiac events (MACE; RR, 0.91; 95% CI, 0.83-1.0; p = 0.08; I(2) = 0.0%). Furthermore, angiographic data showed that in-stent and in-segment late luminal loss were similar between the two groups. Conclusions: Compared with DP-SES, BP-DES were associated with a lower rate of very late stent thrombosis and an equivalent risk of MACE. Larger randomized studies are needed to confirm this finding. © 2015 S. Karger AG, Basel.
    Cardiology 01/2015; 130(2):96-105.
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    ABSTRACT: Objective: Osteopontin (OPN), a sialoprotein present within atherosclerotic lesions, especially in calcified plaques, is linked to the progression of coronary artery disease and heart failure. We assessed the impact of valve surgery on serum OPN and left ventricular (LV) function in patients with mitral regurgitation (MR). Methods: Thirty-two patients with severe MR scheduled for surgery were included in the study. Echocardiography markers were assessed preoperatively and at 3 months following the surgery and matched with the serum OPN levels. Results: Valve surgery was associated with a reduction of the ejection fraction (EF) from 55.2 ± 6.3 to 48.8 ± 7.1% after surgery, p < 0.001. Following surgery, the OPN level was significantly higher than preoperatively (mean 245, range 36-2,284 ng/ml vs. 76, 6-486 ng/ml, p = 0.007). Preoperative OPN exhibited a slight negative correlation with the EF (r = -0.35, p = 0.04), and a moderate correlation with vena contracta (r = -0.38, p = 0.02). There were no other meaningful correlations between conventional echocardiographic parameters and OPN. Conclusion: Following valve surgery due to severe MR, patients exhibited a decrease in EF and an increase in OPN levels. The assessment of preoperative OPN failed to strongly predict probable LV dysfunction. © 2015 S. Karger AG, Basel.
    Cardiology 01/2015; 130(2):82-86.
  • Arthur M Feldman, Lilin She, Dennis M McNamara, Douglas L Mann, Michael R Bristow, Alan S Maisel, Daniel R Wagner, Bert Andersson, Luigi Chiariello, Christopher S Hayward, Paul Hendry, John D Parker, Normand Racine, Craig H Selzman, Michele Senni, Janina Stepinska, Marian Zembala, Jean Rouleau, Eric J Velazquez, Kerry L Lee
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    ABSTRACT: Objectives and Background: We evaluated the ability of 23 genetic variants to provide prognostic information in patients enrolled in the Genetic Substudy of the Surgical Treatment for Ischemic Heart Failure (STICH) trials. Methods: Patients assigned to STICH Hypothesis 1 were randomized to medical therapy with or without coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG). Those assigned to STICH Hypothesis 2 were randomized to CABG or CABG with left ventricular reconstruction. Results: In patients assigned to STICH Hypothesis 2 (n = 714), no genetic variant met the prespecified Bonferroni-adjusted threshold for statistical significance (p < 0.002); however, several variants met nominal prognostic significance: variants in the β2-adrenergic receptor gene (β2-AR Gln27Glu) and in the A1-adenosine receptor gene (A1-717 T/G) were associated with an increased risk of a subject dying or being hospitalized for a cardiac problem (p = 0.027 and 0.031, respectively). These relationships remained nominally significant even after multivariable adjustment for prognostic clinical variables. However, none of the 23 genetic variants influenced all-cause mortality or the combination of death or cardiovascular hospitalization in the STICH Hypothesis 1 population (n = 532) by either univariate or multivariable analysis. Conclusion: We were unable to identify the predictive genotypes in optimally treated patients in these two ischemic heart failure populations. © 2015 S. Karger AG, Basel.
    Cardiology 01/2015; 130(2):69-81.
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    ABSTRACT: Despite a growing awareness of stress (takotsubo) cardiomyopathy, the diversity in precipitants beyond emotional distress remains under-appreciated. Emerging data implicate a differential influence of precipitant type on the variable presentations of stress cardiomyopathy. We outline 5 cases of stress cardiomyopathy where the precipitant was an acute exacerbation of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease treated with high-dose bronchodilator therapy. In this setting, an atypical and insidious presentation of the stress cardiomyopathy was consistently observed that was difficult to distinguish from the acute airway exacerbation itself, with an absence of chest pain in particular. Scrutiny of published single-case reports reveals a similar atypical presentation; this supports the existence of a novel bronchogenic subgroup of stress cardiomyopathy. A key role of repeat ECG evaluation in distinguishing protracted but uncomplicated bronchospasm from bronchogenic stress cardiomyopathy is highlighted. Further data are now required to examine whether high-dose β-agonist therapy is implicated in this association. © 2015 S. Karger AG, Basel.
    Cardiology 01/2015; 130(2):106-11.
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    ABSTRACT: Trimetazidine (TMZ) is a well-known anti-ischemic agent; however, its efficacy and mechanism of cardioprotection on coronary microembolization (CME) are largely unknown. The present study was undertaken to determine whether TMZ pretreatment could attenuate myocardial apoptosis and improve cardiac function in a swine model of CME. Fifteen swine were randomly and equally divided into a sham-operated (control) group, CME group and CME plus TMZ (TMZ) group. CME was induced by injecting inert plastic microspheres (42 μm in diameter) into the left anterior descending artery. For the control group, the same dose of normal saline was substituted for the microspheres, and the TMZ group was pretreated with TMZ 30 min before microsphere injection. Cardiac function was assessed by echocardiography, myocardial apoptosis was detected by TUNEL staining, and the expression levels of cleaved caspase-9/3 were measured by Western blot 12 h after operation. Compared to the control group, cardiac function in the CME group was significantly decreased (p < 0.05); however, TMZ pretreatment showed significantly improved cardiac function as compared to the CME group (p < 0.05). The myocardial apoptotic rate and the expression levels of cleaved caspase-9/3 increased remarkably in CME group as compared with the control group (p < 0.001). Again, TMZ pretreatment significantly reduced the apoptotic rate and also the expression levels of cleaved caspase-9/3 (p < 0.001). The present study demonstrated that TMZ pretreatment could significantly inhibit CME-induced myocardial apoptosis and improve cardiac function, and that the cardioprotective effect appeared to be mediated by the blockade of the mitochondrial apoptotic pathway. These results emphasize the importance of TMZ pretreatment in the therapy of CME-induced myocardial injury. © 2015 S. Karger AG, Basel.
    Cardiology 01/2015; 130(2):130-6.
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    ABSTRACT: This pilot trial evaluated the feasibility and safety of an early discharge strategy (EDS: ≤72 h, followed by outpatient lifestyle interventions), in comparison with a conventional discharge strategy (CDS) for low-risk (Zwolle risk score ≤3) ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) patients treated with primary angioplasty. One hundred patients were randomized to an EDS (n = 54) or a CDS (n = 46). The primary end point was the feasibility of the EDS: (1) ≥70% of EDS patients discharged ≤72 h, (2) ≥70% visited by a nurse ≤7 days after discharge, (3) ≥70% with ≥3 visits by the nurse and (4) ≥70% visited by a cardiologist ≤3 months. The mean age was 59.2 ± 12.2 years and ejection fraction 54.0 ± 7.1%. Eighty-six percent were male (12% diabetics). Vascular access was radial in 91%. Ischemic time was ≤4 h in 75%. Length of stay was shorter in EDS as compared with CDS (70.1 ± 8.1 vs. 111.8 ± 28.3 h, p < 0.001). EDS feasibility was: (1) 72.2%; (2) 81.5%; (3) 76.9%; (4) 72.2%. There were no adverse events or differences in intervention goals and quality of life between groups. An EDS in low-risk STEMI patients is feasible and seems to be safe. A shorter hospital stay could benefit patients and health care systems. © 2015 S. Karger AG, Basel.
    Cardiology 01/2015; 130(2):120-9.
  • Yang Liu, Manasi Bapat, Haroon Kamran, Louis Salciccioli, Anna Rozenboym, Jeremy Coplan, Jason M Lazar
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    ABSTRACT: Low ankle-brachial index (ABI) is a marker of peripheral arterial disease associated with higher cardiovascular risk. ABI has been found to be influenced by left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF), but this relation is confounded by atherosclerosis. Since nonhuman primates have a low incidence of atherosclerosis, we sought to evaluate the effect of LVEF on ABI in 24 healthy female bonnet macaques (age 83 ± 21 months). LVEF was determined by echocardiography during anesthesia with ketamine. ABI was determined using automatic blood pressure cuff. Mean LVEF was 73 ± 6%. Mean ABI was 1.03 (range 0.78-1.17) with similar right and left lower limb values (p = 0.78). On univariate analysis, mean ABI was significantly correlated with LVEF (r = 0.58, p = 0.003) but not with age, crown-rump length or weight. Mean LVEF increased in a stepwise manner from lowest to highest ABI tertile (68 ± 6 vs. 73 ± 4 vs. 77 ± 5%, p = 0.008). On ordinal regression and forced multivariate linear analyses, ABI status was independently related to LVEF. ABI is influenced by left ventricular systolic function but not age, height, weight or mass index in bonnet macaques. Left ventricular systolic function should be accounted for when considering ABI measurements. © 2015 S. Karger AG, Basel.
    Cardiology 01/2015; 130(2):91-5.
  • Yi-Chih Wang, Chih-Chieh Yu, Fu-Chun Chiu, Vincent Splett, Ruth Klepfer, Kathryn Hilpisch, Chia-Ti Tsai, Ling-Ping Lai, Juey-Jen Hwang, Jiunn-Lee Lin
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    ABSTRACT: We tested the acute effects of resynchronization in heart failure patients with a normal (>50%) left ventricular (LV) ejection fraction (HFNEF) and mechanical dyssynchrony. Twenty-four HFNEF patients (72 ± 6 years, 5 male) with mechanical dyssynchrony (standard deviation of electromechanical time delay among 12 LV segments >35 ms) were studied with temporary pacing catheters in the right atrium, LV, and right ventricle (RV), and high-fidelity catheters for pressure recording. Using selected atrioventricular (AV) intervals of 60, 90, 120, 150, and 180 ms to optimize transmitral flow during simultaneous biventricular pacing, the RV-LV (VV) interval was then evaluated at RV30, RV15, 0, LV15, LV30, and LV45 (RV or LV indicates which ventricle was paced first, the number indicates by how many ms). During simultaneous pacing, longer AV intervals were associated with improved LV pressure-derivative minimums and increased aortic pressures (p < 0.05 vs. normal sinus rhythm). In the VV interval from RV30 to LV45, there was a graded increase in the aortic velocity time integral and a decrease in dyssynchrony during simultaneous or LV-first pacing (p < 0.05 vs. normal sinus rhythm). For HFNEF patients with mechanical dyssynchrony, acute simultaneous biventricular or LV-first pacing with longer AV intervals reduced mechanical dyssynchrony and improved diastolic and systolic hemodynamics. © 2015 S. Karger AG, Basel.
    Cardiology 01/2015; 130(2):112-9.
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    ABSTRACT: Objectives: Patients with profound cardiovascular compromise have poor prognosis despite inotropic and intra-aortic balloon pump (IABP) support. Peripheral venoarterial extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (V-A ECMO) offers these patients temporary support as a bridge to various options including the ‘bridge to recovery'. Methods: We studied the outcomes of 135 patients who underwent peripheral V-A ECMO and concomitant IABP implantation in our hospital from 2007 to 2012 for various clinical indications. The ECMO circuit consisted of a centrifugal pump and an oxygenator. Results: V-A ECMO was implanted in the cardiac catheterization laboratory in 51 patients (37.8%), at the bedside in 5 (3.7%) and in the operating room in 79 (58.5%). Mean duration of support was 8.5 ± 7.1 days. Median length of stay was 28 days (interquartile range 14-62). Complications included bleeding at the access site in 14.1%, stroke in 11.1% and vascular complications requiring intervention in 16.3%. Overall inhospital survival was 57.8% with outcomes including heart transplantation (3%), implantable left ventricular assist device (8.1% as bridge to transplantation and 6.7% as destination therapy), surgery (7.4%) and myocardial recovery (40.7%). Prior IABP use and axillary cannulation were independent predictors of reduced inhospital mortality, stroke or vascular injury. Conclusions: Peripheral V-A ECMO with IABP is an effective therapy for patients with severely compromised cardiovascular function. It offers reasonable survival and a spectrum of definitive options from ‘bridge to recovery' to heart transplantation for the management of this critically ill population. © 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel
    Cardiology 09/2014; 129:137-143.
  • Cardiology 08/2014; 129(1):46-54.
  • Cardiology 07/2014; 129(1):36-38.
  • Cardiology 06/2014; 129(1):18-19.
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    ABSTRACT: Objectives: Recent studies have reported increased red blood cell distribution width (RDW) has been associated with adverse outcomes in heart failure and stable coronary disease. We investigated the association between RDW and risk of all-cause mortality in patients with ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) who were free of heart failure at baseline. Methods: We enrolled 691 patients with STEMI who were free of heart failure at baseline confirmed by coronary angiography in Beijing Friendship Hospital from January 2007 to December 2008. According to the median RDW at baseline (13.0%) on admission, the patients were divided into two groups: a low-RDW group (RDW <13.0%, n = 329) and a high-RDW group (RDW ≥13.0%, n = 362). All-cause mortality rates were compared between groups. Mean duration of follow-up was 41.8 months. The relation between RDW and clinical outcomes after hospital discharge were tested using Cox regression models, adjusting for clinical variables. At the same time, the sensitivity and specificity of RDW were analyzed by ROC analysis. Results: Forty-seven patients (6.8%) died during follow-up. The cumulative incidence of all-cause death was significantly higher in the high-RDW group than in the low-RDW group (log-rank p = 0.007). Multivariate analysis revealed that high RDW was associated with all-cause mortality (hazard ratio: 3.43; 95% confidence interval: 1.17-8.32; p = 0.025). The area under the ROC curve was 0.562. Conclusion: From the statistical point of view, increased RDW is associated with all-cause and cardiac mortality rates in patients with STEMI who were free of heart failure at baseline. But RDW is a marker with a very low prognostic accuracy that does not seem to be clinically helpful. © 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel.
    Cardiology 06/2014; 128(4):343-348.
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    ABSTRACT: We report a case of amiodarone-induced epididymitis and review the pertinent literature. This disease is currently a diagnosis of exclusion and is believed to be self-limiting. We found new evidence for the pathological diagnosis and identified amiodarone-like crystals in the epididymis as a pathological mechanism of this disease. This case also suggests that amiodarone-induced epididymitis is not self-limiting. Continued use of amiodarone according to the current guidelines led to a bilateral epididymectomy. We recommend withdrawal or reduction of amiodarone dosage immediately once the signs and symptoms of epididymitis present in this population of patients. When epididymitis does not seem to be caused by an infection or any other identifiable etiology, this should not be overlooked by the cardiologist, urologist or general practitioner. These findings and recommendations should help reduce the suffering of patients and improve their clinical outcomes. © 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel.
    Cardiology 06/2014; 128(4):349-351.
  • Cardiology 06/2014; 128(4):317-319.
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    ABSTRACT: Objective: To assess the prognostic significance of iron deficiency (ID) in a chronic heart failure (CHF) outpatient population. Methods and Results: We prospectively evaluated 127 patients with stable CHF and left ventricular ejection fraction ≤45%. Clinical and analytical data as well as information regarding the occurrence of the composite endpoint of overall mortality and nonfatal cardiovascular events were assessed. Among the 127 patients enrolled [81% men, median age: 62 years (25th-75th percentile: 53-68)], 46 (36%) patients had ID. Women, patients with higher plasma brain natriuretic peptide levels (>400 pg/ml) and with right ventricular systolic dysfunction presented ID more frequently (p < 0.05 for all). At 225 ± 139 days of follow-up, the composite endpoint occurred in 15 (12%) patients. It was more frequent in ID (24 vs. 5%, p = 0.001) and anemic patients (25 vs. 8%, p = 0.014). In a Cox regression analysis, ID was associated with a higher likelihood of composite endpoint occurrence (HR 5.00, 95% CI 1.59-15.78, p = 0.006). In a multivariable analysis adjusted for clinical variables, including the presence of anemia, ID remained a significant predictor of the composite endpoint (HR 5.38, 95% CI 1.54-18.87, p = 0.009). Conclusion: In a CHF outpatient population, ID carried a higher risk of unfavorable outcome, irrespectively of the presence of anemia. © 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel.
    Cardiology 06/2014; 128(4):320-326.
  • Cardiology 06/2014; 128(4):314-315.
  • Cardiology 06/2014; 128(4):316.
  • Cardiology 06/2014; 128(4):313.
  • Cardiology 06/2014; 128(4):301-303.