Pancoronary plaque vulnerability in patients with acute coronary syndrome and ruptured culprit plaque: A 3-vessel optical coherence tomography study.

American heart journal (Impact Factor: 4.56). 01/2014; 167(1):59-67. DOI: 10.1016/j.ahj.2013.10.011
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Recent studies described different clinical and underlying plaque characteristics between patients with and without plaque rupture presenting with acute coronary syndrome (ACS). In light of the systemic nature of atherosclerosis, we hypothesized that nonculprit plaques might also express different morphological features in these 2 groups of patients.
Thirty-eight patients with ACS who underwent 3-vessel optical coherence tomography imaging were identified from the Massachusetts General Hospital Optical Coherence Tomography Registry. Based on culprit plaque morphology, the study population was divided into 2 groups: patients with plaque rupture at the culprit lesion (group 1) and patients with nonruptured plaque at the culprit lesion (group 2). Prevalence and features of nonculprit plaques were compared between the 2 groups.
A total of 118 nonculprit plaques were analyzed. Patients in group 1 (n = 17) had nonculprit plaques with higher prevalence of thin-cap fibroatheroma (52.9% vs 19.0%, P = .029) and disruption (35.3% vs 4.8%, P = .016) compared with patients in group 2 (n = 21). Nonculprit plaques in group 1 showed wider maximum lipid arc (198.9° ± 41.7° vs 170.2° ± 41.9°, P = .003), greater lipid length (7.8 ± 4.4 mm vs 5.1 ± 2.4 mm, P = .003), higher lipid index (1196.9 ± 700.5 vs 747.7 ± 377.3, P = .001), and thinner fibrous cap (107.0 ± 56.5 μm vs 137.3 ± 69.8 μm, P = .035) compared with those in group 2.
The present study showed distinctive features of nonculprit plaques between patients with ACS caused by plaque rupture and patients with ACS caused by nonruptured plaques. Patients with plaque rupture had increased pancoronary vulnerability in nonculprit plaques, suggesting that a more aggressive treatment paradigm aiming at the stabilization of vulnerable plaques may offer additional benefit to these patients.

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    ABSTRACT: Patients presenting with acute coronary syndrome (ACS) may have different plaque morphologies at the culprit lesion. In particular, plaque rupture (PR) has been shown as the more frequent culprit plaque morphology in ACS. However, its prognostic value is still unknown. In this study, we evaluated the prognostic value of PR, compared with intact fibrous cap (IFC), in patients with ACS. We enrolled consecutive patients admitted to our Coronary Care Unit for ACS and undergoing coronary angiography followed by interpretable optical coherence tomography (OCT) imaging. Culprit lesion was classified as PR and IFC by OCT criteria. Prognosis was assessed according to such culprit lesion classification. Major adverse cardiac events (MACEs) were defined as the composite of cardiac death, non-fatal myocardial infarction, unstable angina, and target lesion revascularization (follow-up mean time 31.58 ± 4.69 months). The study comprised 139 consecutive ACS patients (mean age 64.3 ± 12.0 years, male 73.4%, 92 patients with non-ST elevation ACS and 47 with ST-elevation ACS). Plaque rupture was detected in 82/139 (59%) patients. There were no differences in clinical, angiographic, or procedural data between patients with PR when compared with those having IFC. Major adverse cardiac events occurred more frequently in patients with PR when compared with those having IFC (39.0 vs. 14.0%, P = 0.001). Plaque rupture was an independent predictor of outcome at multivariable analysis (odds ratio 3.735, confidence interval 1.358-9.735). Patients with ACS presenting with PR as culprit lesion by OCT have a worse prognosis compared with that of patients with IFC. This finding should be taken into account in risk stratification and management of patients with ACS. Published on behalf of the European Society of Cardiology. All rights reserved. © The Author 2015. For permissions please email:


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May 30, 2014