Clinical Management of Patients with Coronary Syndromes and Negative Fractional Flow Reserve Findings

From the Servicio de Cardiología, Unidad de Hemodinámica, Hospital Clinico Universitario Virgen de la Victoria, Campus de Teatinos, Málaga, Spain
Journal of Interventional Cardiology (Impact Factor: 1.32). 09/2001; 14(5):505 - 510. DOI: 10.1111/j.1540-8183.2001.tb00366.x

ABSTRACT Aims: New interventional techniques to diagnose coronary artery stenosis, such as calculation of myocardial fractional flow reserve (FFR) with a guidewire and pressure transducer, provide a functional assessment of coronary lesions. The present study was designed to investigate the occurrence of cardiac events in patients with coronary syndromes and negative FFR findings in moderately severe coronary stenosis in order to determine the usefulness of this technique in predicting coronary events during follow-up for problems commonly encountered in clinical practice. A further objective was to evaluate the safety of deferring angioplasty in patients with a negative FFR result. Methods: We studied 43 patients with 44 moderately severe coronary artery stenoses on angiography and FFR ≤ 0.75. Mean age of the patients was 58 ± 11.4 years. The indications for coronary angiography included recent unstable angina in 24 (55.8%) patients, recent acute myocardial infarction in 10 (23.2%) patients, 5 (11.6%) patients with a coronary stent who had symptoms of uncertain cause, and stable angina in 4 (9.3%) patients. Results: During a mean follow-up period of 10.7 ± 5.9 months, clinical events (unstable angina) occurred in five patients. In three patients, the initially investigated artery was involved, and in the two patients who required coronary revascularizatian, unstable angina was related with an artery different from the one studied initially. Conclusions: Patients with recent coronary syndromes and negative FFR findings in moderately severe coronary stenosis were unlikely to have cardiac events during a 10-month follow-up period. Our findings suggest that FFR is a potentially useful indicator of the likelihood of cardiac events and thus represents a useful aid in clinical decision-making in the hentodynamics laboratory. This diagnostic technique also is potentially useful in identifying patients for whom angioplasty can be safely deferred.

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