[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Coumadin ridge is a normal anatomic variant that is occasionally found in the left atrium. It can present as a linear or nodular mass which can undulate with cardiac motion and if particularly prominent, can easily be mistaken for a tumor or thrombus. Careful evaluation and consideration of the common variants discussed in this review can help limit misdiagnosis, as well as unnecessary workup and treatment. We present a case of coumadin ridge that was found on a patient using two-dimensional transthoracic echocardiography. Core tip: As we improve imaging modalities, normal anatomic variants of the heart are coming to our attention more frequently. Coumadin ridge is an example of such a variant that is occasionally found on various imaging modalities of the heart, including transthoracic echocardiography, transesophageal echocardiography, cardiac magnetic imaging, among others. Coumadin ridge is a term that refers to a part of the left atrium that lies between the left atrial appendage and the left superior pulmonary vein. Since this is a not a common finding, and due to its shape and location, it has the potential of being misdiagnosed as a left atrial myoxma or thrombus. Lodhi AM, Nguyen T, Bianco C, Movahed A. Coumadin ridge: An incidental finding of a left atrial pseudotumor on transthoracic echocardiography. World J Clin Cases 2015; 3(9): 831-834 Available from:
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The end-stage renal disease population poses a challenge for obtaining venous access required for life-saving invasive cardiac procedures. In this case report, we describe an adult patient with end-stage renal disease in whom the hepatic vein was the only available access to implant a single-lead permanent cardiac pacemaker. A 63-year-old male with end-stage renal disease on maintenance hemodialysis and permanent atrial fibrillation/atrial flutter presented with symptomatic bradycardia. Imaging studies revealed all traditional central venous access sites to be occluded/non-accessible. With the assistance of vascular interventional radiology, a trans-hepatic venous catheter was placed. This was then used to place a right ventricular pacing lead with close attention to numerous technical aspects. The procedure was completed successfully with placement of a single-lead permanent cardiac pacemaker.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Patients with prosthetic cardiac valves are at high risk for thromboembolic complications and need life long anticoagulation with warfarin, which can be associated with variable dose requirements and fluctuating level of systemic anticoagulation and may predispose to thromboembolic and or hemorrhagic complications. Prosthetic cardiac valve thrombosis is associated with high morbidity and mortality. A high index of suspicion is essential for prompt diagnosis. Transthoracic echocardiography, and if required transesophageal echocardiography are the main diagnostic imaging modalities. Medically stable patients can be managed with thrombolytic therapy and anticoagulation, while some patients may require surgical thrombectomy or valve replacement. We present a case report of a patient with prosthetic mitral valve and an unusually large left atrial thrombus with both thromboembolic and hemorrhagic complications.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Papillary fibroelastomas are rare benign cardiac tumours with a predilection for cardiac valves. Because of the rarity of these tumours, management is individualized, but some recommend surgical removal of all papillary fibroelastomas due to the increased risk of embolization. We report a case of a 71-year-old man who presented with a sessile mass on the tricuspid valve. The mass, a papillary fibroelastoma, was successfully biopsied and removed in the cardiac catheterization laboratory. This report demonstrates a unique minimally invasive way of approaching a cardiac tumour wherein a major surgery was avoided.
The Canadian journal of cardiology 07/2015; DOI:10.1016/j.cjca.2015.06.032 · 3.94 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Calcification of the pericardium is a relatively rare finding and often has an uncertain etiology. Incidental findings of pericardial calcification may increase due to widespread application of cardiac computed tomography for the assessment of coronary atherosclerosis in the appropriate clinical setting using coronary artery calcium scoring and/or coronary angiography. Pericardial calcification alone is asymptomatic and is neither necessary nor sufficient for the diagnosis of pericardial constriction. Its presence may suggest of diffused pericardial scarring and consequently, its pathological involvement with pericardial constriction. Calcification of the pericardium must be evaluated with full clinical knowledge to facilitate an accurate diagnosis and an appropriate therapy when required. Our objective is to present a case of asymptomatic pericardial calcification and to discuss the importance of its clinical implications.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Renal cell carcinoma is a common urological malignancy with the unique ability to invade the inferior vena cava (IVC) and to extend into the right atrium of the heart. Of those with Renal cell carcinoma only 4%-25% are found to have IVC invasion and of those only 2%-10% extend into the right atrium. If treated surgically, extension of tumor thrombus is not a determinant of survival; therefore it is imperative to determine the presence and extent of tumor thrombus in order to determine surgical approach and tumor resection. To date this has been primarily accomplished by magnetic resonance imaging and computed tomography. We present a case of 61 years old African American woman in which transthoracic echocardiography provided a more accurate determination/characterization of the presence and degree of tumor thrombus and extension.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We report a case of a 77-year-old patient with complete atrioventricular block. She underwent permanent pacemaker implantation complicated by right ventricular lead perforation. This was suspected on transthoracic echocardiogram and confirmed by chest computed tomography. The lead was repositioned in the cardiac electrophysiology lab followed by an uneventful course thereafter.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Assessment of right ventricular (RV) function is important in the management of various forms of cardiovascular disease. Accurately assessing RV volume and systolic function is a challenge in day-to-day clinical practice due to its complex geometry. Tricuspid annular plane systolic excursion (TAPSE) and systolic excursion velocity (S') have been reviewed to further assess their suitability and objectivity in evaluating RV function. Multiple studies have validated their diagnostic and prognostic values in numerous pathologic conditions. Diminished longitudinal contraction after cardiothoracic surgery is a well-known phenomenon, but it is not well validated. Despite significant reduction in RV performance along the long-axis assessed by TAPSE and S' after cardiac surgery, RV ejection fractions did not change as well as the left ventricular parameters and exercise capacity. RV contractile patterns were markedly altered with decreased longitudinal shortening and increased transverse shortening, which are likely resulted from the septal damage during cardiac surgery. The septum is essential for RV performance due to its oblique fiber orientation. This allows ventricular twisting, which is a vital mechanism against increased pulmonary vascular resistance. The septum function along with TAPSE and S' should be adequately assessed during cardiac surgery, and evidence of septal dysfunction should lead to reevaluation of myocardial protection methods.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Dystrophic cardiac calcification is often associated with conditions causing systemic inflammation and when present, is usually extensive, often encompassing multiple cardiac chambers and valves. We present an unusual case of dystrophic left atrial calcification in the setting of end stage renal disease on hemodialysis diagnosed by echocardiography and computed tomography. Significant calcium deposition is confined within the walls of the left atrium with no involvement of the mitral valve, and no hemodynamic effects.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Left ventricular (LV) pseudoaneurysm is a rare complication that is reported in less than 0.1% of all patients with myocardial infarction. It is the result of cardiac rupture contained by the pericardium and is characterized by the absence of myocardial tissue in its wall unlike true aneurysm which involves full thickness of the cardiac wall. The clinical presentation of these patients is nonspecific, making the diagnosis challenging. Transthoracic echocardiogram and cardiac magnetic resonance imaging are the noninvasive modalities whereas coronary arteriography and left ventriculography are invasive modalities used for the diagnosis. As this condition is lethal, prompt diagnosis and timely management is vital.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Pulsus alternans is characterized by regular rhythm with beat-to-beat alternation of systolic pressures. Left ventricular alternans is usually found in severe left ventricular dysfunction due to cardiomyopathy, coronary artery disease, systemic hypertension, and aortic stenosis. Right ventricular alternans is usually associated with left ventricular alternans, right ventricular dysfunction, pulmonary embolism, and pulmonary hypertension. Biventricular alternans is rare and associated with severe left ventricular dysfunction and left anterior descending coronary artery disease. The exact mechanism of pulsus alternans has not been clearly delineated, and it has been remained a subject of investigation and conjecture since the nineteenth century. Two fundamental mechanisms have been proposed to explain ventricular alteration. The first, based on the Frank-Starling mechanism, proposes beat-to-beat alteration in end-diastolic volume accounted for the alternating contractile force. The second proposed mechanism which explains the physiology of pulsus alternans involves the abnormal calcium handling by cardiac myocytes. To the best of our knowledge, biventricular alternans in pulmonary embolism has not been previously reported in the medical literature. We present and discuss the mechanisms of pulsus alternans and its clinical implications.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Persistent left superior vena cava, usually an incidental finding, is the most common thoracic vein anatomical variation draining into the coronary sinus. Central venous catheter procedures may be complicated secondary to the presence of a persistent left superior vena cava, leading to life-threatening complications such as arrhythmias, cardiogenic shock, and cardiac arrest. We present a case of persistent superior vena cava diagnosed on transthoracic echocardiogram (TTE) in a patient with congestive heart failure. A dilated coronary sinus was identified on TTE, followed by injection of agitated saline into the left antecubital vein resulting in filling of the coronary sinus prior to the right atrium-an indication of persistent left superior vena-cava. This also was confirmed on cardiac computed tomography. Such a diagnosis is critical in patients who may undergo central venous catheter procedures such as our patient's potential requirement for an implantable cardiovertor defibrillator due to severe global left ventricular systolic dysfunction. The presence of a persistent left superior vena cava should always be suspected when the guidewire takes a left-sided downward course towards the right atrium at the level of the coronary sinus. Therefore, special attention should be paid to the imaging work-up prior to central venous catheter procedures.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Ruptured sinus of Valsalva is very uncommon, and is < 1% of all congenital defects. The incidence ranges from 0.1%-3.5%. There is a male to female predominance of 4:1, with the highest incidence in the Asian population. Higher incidence is also seen in patients with Marfan's syndrome and Ehlers Danlos syndrome. There is a higher association of ruptured sinus of Valsalva with ventricular septal defect (VSD), aortic stenosis, and bicuspid valve defect. While most patients with VSD often have rupture of their right coronary sinus of Valsalva into the right ventricle due to poor structural integrity, we present a rare case of a patient with VSD who had rupture of his noncoronary sinus of Valsalva into the right atrium.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: An unknown aberrant flow in the right atrium observed on doppler with transesophageal echocardiogram (TEE) in a patient with prior coronary bypass. TEE revealed normal size left ventricle with severely dilated left atrium. There was moderate aortic regurgitation and moderate aortic stenosis noted. Patient was incidentally found to have an abnormal vascular communication noted to the right atrium. To further evaluate this finding, the patient underwent cardiac magnetic resonance angiography which revealed that the tubular structure noted on TEE was actually a graft that was abutting onto the coronary sinus, and the flow anomaly was really the graft coming up and running adjacent to the coronary sinus.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Thrombotic thrombocytopenia purpura (TTP) was first described in 1924 as a "pathologic alteration of the microvasculature, with detachment or swelling of the endothelium, amorphous material in the sub-endothelial space, and luminal platelet aggregation leading to compromise of the microcirculation". Ticlopidine induced TTP has been highly associated with autoimmune induced reduction in ADAMTS-13 activity. These findings, to a lesser extent, have also been found in clopidogrel induced TTP. We report a case of clopidogrel associated TTP in a patient that presented with acute stroke, renal failure, and non-ST elevation myocardial infarction.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Spontaneous coronary artery dissection and vertebral artery dissection are rare, life-threatening conditions. The pathophysiology of spontaneous coronary artery dissection during the peripartum period is poorly understood. We present a case of spontaneous multivessel dissection in a 32-year-old postpartum woman who presented with neck and chest pain. The patient's coronary and vertebral artery dissections were diagnosed with use of multiple imaging methods, and dissection of the internal mammary artery was discovered during surgery. The patient underwent successful coronary artery bypass grafting and remained asymptomatic 2 years later. To our knowledge, this is the first report of simultaneous coronary, vertebral, and internal mammary artery dissection in a postpartum woman. Early recognition and treatment is crucial, given the high mortality rate associated with spontaneous dissection.
Texas Heart Institute journal / from the Texas Heart Institute of St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital, Texas Children's Hospital 10/2012; 39(5):683-6. · 0.65 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The role of statins in reducing the risk of coronary artery disease is well established. The use of statins in patients at high risk for cardiovascular disease has reduced the incidence of major clinical events by 25% to 40%. However, despite aggressive statin therapy and the achievement of target low-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels, the residual risk of cardiovascular events remains high. This review investigates emerging therapies to target the residual risk of cardiovascular events with concurrent statin therapy.
Reviews in cardiovascular medicine 01/2012; 13(1):e24-31. DOI:10.3909/ricm0583 · 0.56 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Numerous clinical studies have shown that coronary artery calcium scoring provides substantial incremental risk prediction beyond conventional coronary risk factors for coronary heart disease events. About half of all patients with coronary artery disease (CAD) present initially with unexpected myocardial infarction or sudden death. Early identification of this subgroup of patients is vital for institution of intensive, early preventive measures to decrease morbidity and mortality due to CAD.
Reviews in cardiovascular medicine 01/2011; 12(2):e94-e103. DOI:10.3909/ricm0566 · 0.56 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Numerous modifiable and unmodifiable risk factors have been identified that contribute to increased cardiovascular risk in renal transplant recipients. We reviewed several clinical studies and journal articles to identify these risk factors in an attempt to risk stratify chronic kidney disease patients who are candidates for renal transplantation. Cardiovascular disease has been identified as the leading cause of death with graft function among renal transplant recipients. No single test or diagnostic modality has been found to provide complete diagnostic and prognostic information. Hence, a combination of clinical, biochemical, and radiographic data is essential to risk stratify renal transplantation candidates.
Reviews in cardiovascular medicine 06/2010; 11(3):e130-40. DOI:10.3909/ricm0547 · 0.56 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Multislice computed tomography (CT) is rapidly emerging as a novel technique for the evaluation of coronary artery disease. It is anticipated that with increasing acceptance of this imaging technique, CT for calcium scores and CT angiography will be performed in ever greater numbers. Thus, it is all but inevitable that clinicians will stumble upon incidental findings given the sheer number of vital organs and blood vessels that are imaged in the field of view. This article reviews the literature on incidental findings on cardiac CT with a focus on pulmonary nodules, ethical aspects of following up such findings, and cost implications.
Reviews in cardiovascular medicine 03/2010; 11(2):84-91. DOI:10.3909/ricm0521 · 0.56 Impact Factor