Massimo Imazio

Massimo Imazio
University Cardiology, Azienda Ospedaliera Città della Salute e della Scienza di Torino, Turin, Italy · Cardiovascular and Thoracic Department

MD FESC

About

410
Publications
66,110
Reads
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14,337
Citations
Additional affiliations
July 2016 - present
Azienda Ospedaliera Città della Salute e della Scienza di Torino
Position
  • Cardiologist
Description
  • Referral Cardiologist for Cardiac MR, Myocarditis and Pericardial Diseases
October 2014 - present
Corso di Laurea in Infermieristica - Azienda Sanitaria Locale "Città di Torino"
Position
  • Professor
January 2014 - present
Azienda Ospedaliera Città della Salute e della Scienza, Cardiology Specialty School, Torino, Italy
Position
  • Lecturer
Description
  • Myopericardial diseases and Cardiac MR

Publications

Publications (410)
Article
Full-text available
Cardiac sarcomas are rare and aggressive tumors that could have a multiorgan involvement and unfavorable prognosis. We present an extremely rare situation of cardiac sarcoma in a fragile elderly patient with a dramatic presentation of cardiogenic shock.
Article
Aim: Colchicine, a microtubule-disassembling (antitubulin) agent used for centuries for the treatment of gout and autoimmune diseases, is a drug of growing interest in the cardiovascular field. While in the last decades it has become cornerstone of pericarditis treatment, it has also emerged in the last few years as a promising drug in the manageme...
Article
We describe an interventricular septum mass in 1 years old child, followed during 14 years. The mass did not grow up over time, the patient did not experienced any arrythmia, and did not developed heart failure. A complete diagnosis of interventricular Fibroma was made at the age of 14 years old when the patient underwent to cardiac MRI. A close fo...
Article
Although traditionally considered a rare and incurable condition, the perspective on cardiac amyloidosis (CA) has changed deeply over the last 10 years following major advances in diagnosis and treatment options. First, the development of non-invasive diagnostic methods, predominantly cardiac scintigraphy with bone tracers, has dramatically changed...
Article
Vaccine-associated myocarditis and pericarditis usually develop within 14 days of COVID-19 vaccination, are exceptionally rare, manifest with mild clinical pictures and are commonly characterized by a favorable evolution. Young men inoculated with two doses of an mRNA vaccine are the subgroup at higher risk. Recent epidemiological studies evaluated...
Article
Aims The outcomes of patients presenting with acute myocarditis and life–threatening ventricular arrhythmias (LT–VA) are unclear. The aim of this study was to assess the incidence and predictors of recurrent major arrhythmic events (MAEs) after hospital discharge in this patient population. Methods and Results We retrospectively analysed 156 patie...
Article
Funding Acknowledgements Type of funding sources: None. Background Prognostic stratification of acute myocarditis (AM) presenting with normal left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) relies mostly on late gadolinium enhancement (LGE) characterization (1). Purpose Left ventricular peak global longitudinal strain (LV-GLS) measured by feature track...
Article
Full-text available
Cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR) has become an essential tool for the evaluation of patients affected or at risk of developing cardiomyopathies (CMPs). In fact, CMR not only provides precise data on cardiac volumes, wall thickness, mass and systolic function but it also a non-invasive characterization of myocardial tissue, thus helping the early di...
Article
Objective The ECG has been traditionally used to support the diagnosis of pericarditis. However, the pericardium is electrically silent and ECG changes may imply concurrent myocardial involvement rather than simple pericarditis. The aim of the present paper is to analyse the frequency, type and clinical implication of ECG changes in patients with p...
Article
Background: Post-episode tapering of Standard of Care (SoC) medication in patients with recurrent pericarditis (RP) varies considerably. Gradual tapering of corticosteroids (CS) is recommended in ESC guidelines (decreasing by 1-2.5 mg/day every 2-6 weeks over 1-2 years) to prevent recurrence. We describe successful faster tapering of SoC treatment...
Article
Heart failure is a complex clinical syndrome with a severe prognosis, despite therapeutic progress. The management of the advanced stages of the syndrome is particularly complex in patients who are referred to palliative care as well as in those who are candidates for cardiac replacement therapy. For the latter group, a prompt recognition of the tr...
Article
Background: Prognostic stratification of acute myocarditis (AM) presenting with normal left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) relies mostly on late gadolinium enhancement (LGE) characterization. Left ventricular peak global longitudinal strain (LV-GLS) measured by feature tracking analysis might improve prognostication of AM presenting with nor...
Article
Eosinophilic myocarditis is a rare form of myocardial inflammation characterized by interstitial infiltration by eosinophils. Clinical presentation may vary from complete absence of symptoms to fulminant myocarditis with cardiogenic shock, to chronic heart failure due to progression to restrictive cardiomyopathy. The main causes of eosinophilic myo...
Article
Myopericardial diseases are relatively common in clinical practice although often neglected due to the limited availability of treatments and evidence to support management strategies. However in the past ten years, growing evidence has improved our knowledge of the pathophysiology of myopericardial diseases and first clinical trials have highlight...
Article
Aim: To investigate the prevalence of amyloid cardiomyopathy (AC) and the diagnostic accuracy of echocardiographic red flags of AC among consecutive adult patients undergoing transthoracic echocardiogram for reason other than AC in 13 Italian institutions. Methods and results: This is an Italian prospective multicentric study, involving a clinic...
Article
Leflunomide, an isoxazole derivative, is a disease-modifying antirheumatic drug, that has successfully been used for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis and psoriatic arthritis as a feasible alternative to methotrexate. Among side effects, pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) has been described in a few case reports. We present a 55-year-old wom...
Article
Introduction: Aspirin or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and colchicine are first-line treatments for acute and recurrent pericarditis. Drugs blocking the NACHT, leucine-rich repeat, and pyrin domain-containing protein 3 (NLRP3) inflammasome/interleukin-1β (IL-1β) axis are beneficial in patients with multiple recurrences. Areas cov...
Article
Cardiomyopathies (CMPs) are myocardial diseases in which the heart muscle is structurally and functionally abnormal in the absence of coronary artery disease, hypertension, valvular disease and congenital heart disease sufficient to cause the observed myocardial abnormality. Thought for a long time to be rare diseases, it is now clear that most of...
Article
It is known that the prognosis of patients affected by light-chain (AL) or transthyretin-related (TTR) amyloidosis is poor. TTR amyloidosis has usually shown a slower progression than AL amyloidosis, both hereditary TTR amyloidosis, where there is an inherited mutation in the DNA, and wild-type TTR amyloidosis, which usually affects the elderly. In...
Article
Aims Prognostic stratification of acute myocarditis (AM) presenting with normal left ventricular (LV) ejection fraction (EF) relies mostly on late gadolinium enhancement (LGE) at cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR) imaging. In this specific AM population, LV peak global longitudinal strain (LV-GLS) measured by feature tracking (FT) analysis might prov...
Article
Aims Clinicians needs to identify patients with cardiac amyloidosis (CA) at an early stage, due to the availability of disease modifying therapies. Some echocardiographic findings may rise the suspicion of CA, also in patients with mild or no symptoms, addressing second level diagnostic tests. To investigate the prevalence of CA in consecutive pati...
Article
Full-text available
Purpose of Review Aim of the review is to discuss the results of major clinical trials and how they can have impact on clinical practice. Recent Findings Pericardial diseases have been the Cinderella of cardiovascular diseases for many years, but improvements in the knowledge of etiology and the pathophysiology especially of recurrent pericarditis...
Article
Post cardiac injury syndromes (PCIS) are becoming increasingly common, due to the growing number of cardiovascular procedures (cardiac surgery, percutaneous interventions) and the high burden of cardiovascular diseases such as acute coronary syndromes. This review aims to provide an overview of the main clinical characteristics of PCIS, along with...
Article
Introduction: Recurrence is the most frequent complication following acute pericarditis and may occur in 30% patients, rising to 50% in case of multiple recurrences, lack of colchicine treatment or use of glucocorticoids. Available treatments include aspirin or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), colchicine, glucocorticoids, immunosupp...
Article
OBJECTIVES Pericardial effusion is a common complication after cardiac surgery, both isolated and in post-pericardiotomy syndrome (PPS), a condition in which pleuropericardial damage triggers both a local and a systemic inflammatory/immune response. The goal of this review was to present a complete picture of PPS and pericardial complications after...
Article
Background/Introduction Currently we remain uncertain about which patients are at increased risk for recurrent pericarditis. Purpose We developed a risk score for pericarditis recurrence in patients with acute pericarditis. Methods We prospectively recruited 262 patients with acute pericarditis. Patients' demographics, clinical, imaging and labor...
Article
The triple therapy (angiotensin-converting enzyme [ACE] inhibitors or angiotensin receptor blockers, beta-blockers, mineralocorticoid receptor antagonists) certificated by the 2012 guidelines for symptomatic patients with heart failure and reduced ejection fraction, reaffirmed in the following document of 2016 with the introduction of angiotensin r...
Article
Anti-interleukin (IL)-1 agents have been developed for the treatment of autoinflammatory diseases characterized by overproduction of IL-1. Idiopathic recurrent pericarditis with inflammatory phenotype (fever, leukocytosis, and elevation of C-reactive protein) has similar features and responds well to this treatment. At present, in Italy, prescripti...
Article
Background The assessment of myocardial fiber deformation with cardiac magnetic resonance feature tracking (CMR-FT) has shown to be promising in terms of prognostic information in several structural heart diseases. However, little is known about its role in hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). Aims of the present study were: 1) to assess the prognost...
Article
Recurrent pericarditis (RP) is a complex inflammatory disorder associated with adverse outcomes and poor quality of life. After the first episode of acute pericarditis, a non‐negligible group of patients will fail to achieve complete remission despite treatment and will be challenged by side effects from the chronic use of medications like corticos...
Article
Anti-interleukin (IL)-1 agents have been developed for the treatment of autoinflammatory and rheumatic conditions, where overproduction of IL-1 is an important pathophysiologic process. IL-1α and IL-1β are the most studied members of the IL-1 family of cytokines and have the strongest proinflammatory effects. A naturally occurring antagonist (IL-1R...
Article
Pericardial diseases are an heterogeneous group of entities, ranging from acute pericarditis to asymptomatic pericardial effusions. New advances in understanding the processes underlying them have been made. In 2020 a prospective study defined the reference intervals of the component of normal pericardial fluid, that was found to be rich in nucleat...
Article
Full-text available
The COVID-19 pandemic represents an unprecedented event that has brought deep changes in hospital facilities with reshaping of the health system organization, revealing inadequacies of current hospital and local health systems. When the COVID-19 emergency will end, further evaluation of the national health system, new organization of acute wards, a...
Article
Full-text available
The European Society of Cardiology guidelines on non-ST-elevation acute coronary syndromes suggest different temporal strategies for the angiographic study depending on the risk profile. The scientific evidence underlying the guideline recommendations and the critical issues currently existing in Italy, that often do not allow either an extended st...
Article
Full-text available
The treatment of patients with advanced acute heart failure is still challenging. Intra-aortic balloon pump (IABP) has widely been used in the management of patients with cardiogenic shock. However, according to international guidelines, its routinary use in patients with cardiogenic shock is not recommended. This recommendation is derived from the...
Article
The COVID-19 pandemic represents an unprecedented event that has brought deep changes in hospital facilities with reshaping of the health system organization, revealing inadequacies of current hospital and local health systems. When the COVID-19 emergency will end, further evaluation of the national health system, new organization of acute wards, a...
Article
Systemic autoimmune diseases are an important cause of pericardial involvement and contribute to up to ∼22% cases of pericarditis with a known aetiology. The underlying mechanism for pericardial involvement varies with each systemic disease and leads to a poor understanding of its management. Multimodality imaging establishes the diagnosis and dete...
Article
Full-text available
Over the last decade, evidence has demonstrated that long-term, low-dose colchicine (0.5mg daily) is effective for preventing gout flare and cardiovascular (CV) events in a wide range of patients. Given the potentially expanding use of colchicine in CV disease, we here review and update the biologic effects and safety of colchicine based on recent...
Article
Current guidelines on the management of pericardial diseases suggest to identify high-risk features associated with an increased risk of non-idiopathic aetiology and complications. The aim of this study is to evaluate a “pericarditis score” to assess potential complicated pericarditis in order to facilitate initial clinical triage. Consecutive pati...
Article
Full-text available
Purpose of Review Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID19) involves the heart, including pericardium. This article reviews the possible pathophysiological mechanisms in pericardial involvement in COVID19 and pericardial manifestations of COVID19. It also summarizes the patients with pericarditis secondary to COVID19 and outlines the contemporary treatmen...
Article
The European Society of Cardiology guidelines on non-ST-elevation acute coronary syndromes suggest different temporal strategies for the angiographic study depending on the risk profile. The scientific evidence underlying the guideline recommendations and the critical issues currently existing in Italy that often do not allow either an extended str...
Article
Colchicine is one of the more ancient drugs of vegetal origin still in use in clinical practice. It has been used for centuries as drug to treat gout, but its anti-inflammatory effects made it efficacious also in different cardiovascular indications (e.g. pericarditis, acute and chronic coronary syndromes, atrial fibrillation), that are well beyond...
Article
Background: The outcomes of patients presenting with acute myocarditis and life-threatening ventricular tachyarrhythmias (LT-VA) are unclear. The aim of this study was to assess incidence and predictors of recurrence of major arrhythmic events (MAEs) after hospital discharge in such patients. Methods and results: We retrospectively analysed 156...
Chapter
Constrictive pericarditis is a pericardial syndrome where the pericardium becomes relatively rigid and inelastic, may be thickened and calcified or not, and impairs mid to late diastolic filling. Constrictive pericarditis is the final pathway of several different diseases or causes, usually starting from pericarditis and pericardial effusion, and p...
Article
Background Constrictive pericarditis represents a treatable cause of mainly right heart failure (RHF), characterized by increased filling pressures and congestive hepatopathy. We hypothesized assessment of T1 and T2 liver relaxation times enables to depict liver congestion, and thus to diagnose RHF. Methods Cardiovascular magnetic resonance imagin...
Article
The treatment of patients with advanced acute heart failure is still challenging. Intra-aortic balloon pump (IABP) has widely been used in the management of patients with cardiogenic shock. However, according to international guidelines, its routinary use in patients with cardiogenic shock is not recommended. This recommendation is derived from the...
Article
Background Currently, we remain uncertain about which patients are at increased risk for recurrent pericarditis. We developed a risk score for pericarditis recurrence in patients with acute pericarditis. Materials and methods We prospectively recruited 262 patients with a first episode of acute pericarditis. Baseline patients’ demographics, clinic...
Article
Cardiac amyloidosis is a serious and progressive infiltrative disease that is caused by the deposition of amyloid fibrils at the cardiac level. It can be due to rare genetic variants in the hereditary forms or as a consequence of acquired conditions. Thanks to advances in imaging techniques and the possibility of achieving a non-invasive diagnosis,...
Article
Cardiac amyloidosis is a serious and progressive infiltrative disease that is caused by the deposition of amyloid fibrils at the cardiac level. It can be due to rare genetic variants in the hereditary forms or as a consequence of acquired conditions. Thanks to advances in imaging techniques and the possibility of achieving a non‐invasive diagnosis,...
Article
Aims The key role of inflammation in the pathogenesis of coronary artery disease (CAD) is an urgent call for innovative treatments. Several trials have proposed colchicine as a therapeutic option for secondary prevention in CAD patients but its utilization is hampered by fears about drug-related adverse events (DAEs) and conflicting evidences. The...
Article
Aims Corticosteroid-dependent and colchicine-resistant recurrent pericarditis (RP) is a challenging management problem, in which conventional anti-inflammatory therapy (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, colchicine, corticosteroids) is unable to control the disease. Recent data suggest a potential role for anti-interleukin-1 (IL-1) agents for th...
Article
The emerging role of colchicine in the treatment of cardiovascular diseases is a strong demand for a comprehensive understanding of its efficacy and safety. This meta-analysis and systematic review aimed to study the efficacy in the reduction of adverse cardiovascular outcomes (CO), and the risk of colchicine-related adverse events (CRAEs). Fourtee...
Article
We read with interest the paper from Navarro‐Millan about the use of anakinra in severe COVID‐19 patients (1). On the other hand, there is the issue of patients treated with anakinra for their underlying condition and who develop COVID‐19 (2).
Article
Bloodstream cholesterol is a central contributor to atherosclerotic cardiovascular diseases. For several decades, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) has been the main biomarker for the prediction of cardiovascular events and therapeutic target of lipid-lowering treatments. More recently, several findings have supported the greater reliabil...
Article
Recurrent pericarditis is a true challenge for clinicians, especially when the patient becomes unresponsive or not tolerant to conventional treatments. An accurate diagnosis of recurrent pericarditis, possibly supported by advanced imaging tools, is critical to provide timely and appropriate treatment of symptoms and prevention of further episodes....
Article
Exercise restriction is a non-pharmacological treatment of pericarditis that could reduce symptoms by slowing heart rate (HR). Beta-blockers allow pharmacological control of HR. Aim of this paper is to explore the possible efficacy of beta-blockers to improve control of symptoms in patients with pericarditis. We analyzed consecutive cases with peri...
Article
Full-text available
The interleukin (IL)-1 family member IL-1α is a ubiquitous and pivotal pro-inflammatory cytokine. The IL-1α precursor is constitutively present in nearly all cell types in health, but is released upon necrotic cell death as a bioactive mediator. IL-1α is also expressed by infiltrating myeloid cells within injured tissues. The cytokine binds the IL-...
Article
Despite the monumental advances in the diagnoses and therapeutics of malignancy, several cancer patients have presented with pericardial involvement, including acute pericarditis, constrictive pericarditis, and pericardial effusion. Multiple factors can contribute to acute pericarditis, including direct metastasis to the heart, pericardial hemorrha...
Article
Aims: Colchicine has an emerging role in the cardiovascular field, although, concerns for side effects, especially gastrointestinal, limit its prescription. We aimed at evaluating reported side effects of colchicine for cardiovascular indications. Methods: We performed a meta-analysis of published randomized controlled trials on colchicine for t...
Article
Introduction: Pericarditis is an inflammatory disease of the pericardium. Progress has been done in recent years in the understanding of its pathophysiology. In particular, preclinical and clinical studies have contributed to increasing our knowledge on the role of interleukin (IL)-1 and NLRP3 (NACHT, leucine-rich repeat, and pyrin domain-containi...
Article
Aspirin and P2Y12 receptor antagonists are widely used across the spectrum of cardiovascular and cerebrovascular diseases. Gastrointestinal complications, including ulcer and bleeding, are relatively common during antiplatelet treatment and, therefore, concomitant proton pump inhibitor (PPI) treatment is often prescribed. However, potential increas...
Article
Myocarditis is an inflammatory heart disease that can occur acutely, as in acute myocarditis, or persistently, as in chronic myocarditis or chronic inflammatory cardiomyopathy. Different agents can induce myocarditis, with viruses being the most common triggers. Generally, acute myocarditis affects relatively young people and men more than women. M...
Preprint
Full-text available
Constrictive pericarditis is a common cause of right heart failure, characterized by increased filling pressures and passive liver congestion. As magnetic resonance (MR) T1 and T2 mapping allow quantification of liver relaxation times, we hypothesized liver mapping may allow depiction of passive liver congestion. We studied 45 pericarditis patients...
Article
Background Interleukin-1 has been implicated as a mediator of recurrent pericarditis. The efficacy and safety of rilonacept, an interleukin-1α and interleukin-1β cytokine trap, were studied previously in a phase 2 trial involving patients with recurrent pericarditis. Methods We conducted a phase 3, multicenter, double-blind, event-driven, randomiz...
Article
Objective Biochemical and cytological pericardial fluid (PF) analysis is essentially based on the knowledge of pleural fluid composition. The aim of the present study is to identify reference intervals (RIs) for PF according to state-of-art methodological standards. Methods We prospectively collected and analysed the PF and venous blood of consecu...
Article
Full-text available
Background Recurrent pericarditis is very difficult to treat, especially when symptoms become refractory to conventional treatments (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs,colchicine,corticosteroids). Interleukin-1 (IL-1) blockade with anakinra has been proved to be useful in this setting. Indeed, persistent inflammation of the pericardium may lead t...