[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Objective:
Dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) is characterised by left ventricular dilation and dysfunction not caused by coronary disease, valvular disease or hypertension. Owing to the considerable aetiological and prognostic heterogeneity in DCM, an extensive diagnostic work-up is recommended. We aimed to assess the value of diagnostic testing beyond careful physical examination, blood tests, echocardiography and coronary angiography.
From October 2008 to November 2012, we prospectively recruited 102 patients referred to our tertiary care hospital with a diagnosis of 'idiopathic' DCM based on patient history, physical examination, routine blood tests, echocardiography and coronary angiography. Extended work-up included cardiac MRI, exercise testing, right-sided catheterisation with biopsies, 24 h ECG and genetic testing.
In 15 patients (15%), a diagnosis other than 'idiopathic' DCM was made based on additional tests. In 10 patients (10%), a possibly disease-causing mutation was detected. 2 patients were found to have non-compaction cardiomyopathy based on MRI findings; 2 patients had systemic inflammatory disease with cardiac involvement; and in 1 patient, cardiac amyloidosis was diagnosed by endomyocardial biopsy. Only in 5 cases did the results of the extended work-up have direct therapeutic consequences.
In patients with DCM, in whom patient history and routine work-up carry no clues to the aetiology, the diagnostic and therapeutic yield of extensive additional testing is modest.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Elevated levels of soluble ST2 (sST2) are associated with adverse outcome in heart failure. A change in sST2 levels has also been shown to presage outcome. In vitro, ST2 expression is induced by myocardial stress and pro-inflammatory stimuli. The determinants of sST2 levels in vivo, and how they vary with clinical status over time, have not been well described. In a cohort of patients with non-ischemic heart failure, we aimed to assess the association between sST2-levels and hemodynamic parameters reflecting right and left ventricular pre- and afterload, and how these vary with time and clinical status.Methods
We prospectively recruited 102 patients with a left ventricular ejection fraction of 26 ± 10% and a diagnosis of idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy based on patient history, clinical examination, echocardiography and coronary angiography. Patients went through extensive baseline work-up and were re-examined after one year. Subsequently, heart transplantations and deaths were recorded. Determinants of sST2 were analyzed at baseline and after one year. Soluble ST2 was measured with a highly sensitive immunoassay.ResultsSoluble ST2 levels were associated with hemodynamic parameters, but these associations were attenuated with clinical improvement. Soluble ST2 was elevated in patients with severe symptoms, but did not vary with etiology, viral presence or the amount of myocardial fibrosis. Heart rate and right atrial pressure remained independent predictors of sST2 on multiple regression analysis.Conclusions
Our results imply that in non-ischemic heart failure, sST2 reflects hemodynamic stress rather than pathogenic processes in the myocardium.
International Journal of Cardiology 11/2014; 179. DOI:10.1016/j.ijcard.2014.11.003 · 4.04 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In a randomized, open-label trial, everolimus was compared to cyclosporine in 115 de novo heart transplant recipients. Patients were assigned within 5 days posttransplant to low-exposure everolimus (3–6 ng/mL) with reduced-exposure cyclosporine (n = 56), or standard-exposure cyclosporine (n = 59), with both mycophenolate mofetil and corticosteroids. In the everolimus group, cyclosporine was withdrawn after 7–11 weeks and everolimus exposure increased (6–10 ng/mL). The primary efficacy end point, measured GFR at 12 months posttransplant, was significantly higher with everolimus versus cyclosporine (mean ± SD: 79.8 ± 17.7 mL/min/1.73 m2 vs. 61.5 ± 19.6 mL/min/1.73 m2; p < 0.001). Coronary intravascular ultrasound showed that the mean increase in maximal intimal thickness was smaller (0.03 mm [95% CI 0.01, 0.05 mm] vs. 0.08 mm [95% CI 0.05, 0.12 mm], p = 0.03), and the incidence of cardiac allograft vasculopathy (CAV) was lower (50.0% vs. 64.6%, p = 0.003), with everolimus versus cyclosporine at month 12. Biopsy-proven acute rejection after weeks 7–11 was more frequent with everolimus (p = 0.03). Left ventricular function was not inferior with everolimus versus cyclosporine. Cytomegalovirus infection was less common with everolimus (5.4% vs. 30.5%, p < 0.001); the incidence of bacterial infection was similar. In conclusion, everolimus-based immunosuppression with early elimination of cyclosporine markedly improved renal function after heart transplantation. Since postoperative safety was not jeopardized and development of CAV was attenuated, this strategy may benefit long-term outcome.
American Journal of Transplantation 07/2014; DOI:10.1111/ajt.12809 · 5.68 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Calcineurin inhibitors have constituted the cornerstone of immunosuppressive regime following heart transplantation. The transplanted heart is subjected to increased hypertrophy and the risk of developing graft vasculopathy. To what extent these negative effects are influenced by different immunosuppressive drugs, is largely unknown. We conducted a randomised, open-label, parallel group clinical trial to assess early introduction of everolimus followed by withdrawal of cyclosporine (EVE) in de novo heart transplant recipients, compared to a standard protocol of cyclosporine-based immunosuppression (CYA). In a substudy we investigated cardiac reserve by invasive hemodynamics during rest and exercise, early (7 weeks) and later (52 weeks) after heart transplantation, in 28 (EVE) and 34 (CYA) patients. The aim was to compare cardiac reserve in the two treatment arms.
Methods: Patients had a right heart catheterisation at rest and during submaximal supine bicycle exercise. Pressures and cardiac output (CO) were measured.
Results: At baseline (7 w) PCWP and CO increased from rest to exercise. After 52 w the hemodynamic pattern was similar, with a non-significant trend towards higher CO during exercise. There were no significant differences between treatment groups.
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The Journal of Heart and Lung Transplantation 04/2014; 33(4):S173-S174. DOI:10.1016/j.healun.2014.01.469 · 6.65 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To examine the effect of balloon pulmonary angioplasty (BPA) on chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension (CTEPH) in patients with inoperable disease or persistent pulmonary hypertension after pulmonary endarterectomy.
Observational cohort study.
Referred patients with inoperable or persistent CTEPH.
Twenty consecutive CTEPH patients (10 females), aged 60±10 years.
Right heart catheterisation, functional capacity (cardiopulmonary exercise testing (CPET) and NYHA class) and blood sampled biomarkers N-terminal pro-brain natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) and troponin T examined at the time of diagnosis and repeated in all patients 3 months after the last BPA.
Seventy-three catheterisations were performed with 18.6±6.1 BPAs per patient on segmental and subsegmental arteries. Two deaths occurred following the first BPA, with an overall 10% periprocedural death rate. Reperfusion oedema complicated seven procedures. Comparisons before and after BPA showed significant haemodynamic improvements, including decreased mean pulmonary artery pressure (mPAP) (45±11 mm Hg vs 33±10 mm Hg; p<0.001) and increased cardiac output (4.9±1.6 L/min vs 5.4±1.9 L/min; p=0.011). Reduced right ventricular strain was indicated by significantly lower plasma levels of NT-proBNP and troponin T. Significant improvement in functional capacity was evident as assessed by NYHA class (3.0±0.5 vs 2.0±0.5; p<0.001) and CPET (13.6±5.6 mL/kg/min vs 17.0±6.5 mL/kg/min; p<0.001). Seventeen patients (85%) were alive after 51±30 months of follow-up.
BPA may offer an alternative form of treatment in selected CTEPH patients. While prognostic markers such as haemodynamics, functional capacity and biomarkers improve, significant periprocedural complications must be recognised. Randomised trials are warranted.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Objectives:
Due to the need for suitable donors for heart transplantation (HTx), older grafts and grafts with prolonged graft ischaemic time (GIT) are accepted. The impact of GIT and donor age on post-transplant cardiac function has not been examined with either newer echocardiographic techniques (tissue Doppler imaging, TDI) or cardiopulmonary exercise testing (CPET). Thus, we studied the influence of GIT and donor age on post-transplant cardiac function and exercise capacity.
Fifty-two stable recipients underwent echocardiography with colour TDI and CPET at a median of 4 years after HTx. Left ventricular (LV) systolic (s') and early diastolic (e') mitral annular velocities, right ventricular (RV) s', RVe' as well as LV ejection fraction (EF) and VO(2peak) were analysed.
HTx recipients with GIT ≥ median value (200 min) had significantly lower septal LVs' (15%, P = 0.005), LVEF (9%, P = 0.015), RVs' (21%, P = 0.007), septal LVe' (22%, P = 0.001) and RVe' velocities (23%, P = 0.011), and slightly lower VO(2peak) (P = 0.098). Recipients with grafts from donor ≥ median age (37 years) had significantly lower LVe' velocities (septal LVe' P = 0.047 and lateral LVe' P = 0.010), but not LV systolic or RV parameters.
Prolonged GIT impairs both systolic and diastolic function at the interventricular septum and RV free wall, while increasing donor age impairs LV diastolic function. The duration of graft ischaemia and donor age should be taken into account when evaluating for cardiac dysfunction in HTx recipients.
European journal of cardio-thoracic surgery: official journal of the European Association for Cardio-thoracic Surgery 05/2013; 44(2). DOI:10.1093/ejcts/ezt233 · 3.30 Impact Factor