[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The causes of death within 1 year of hospital admission in patients with non-ST-segment elevation acute coronary syndromes are ill defined, particularly in patients aged ≥75 years. From January 2008 through May 2010, we enrolled 645 patients aged ≥75 years with non-ST-segment elevation acute coronary syndromes: 313 in a randomized trial comparing an early aggressive versus an initially conservative approach, and 332, excluded from the trial for specific reasons, in a parallel registry. Each death occurring during 1 year of follow-up was adjudicated by an independent committee. The mean age was 82 years in both study cohorts, and 53% were men. By the end of the follow-up period (median 369 days, interquartile range 345 to 391), 120 patients (18.6%) had died. The mortality was significantly greater in the registry (23.8% vs 13.1%, p = 0.001). The deaths were classified as cardiac in 94% of the cases during the index admission and 68% of the cases during the follow-up period. Eighty-six percent of the cardiac deaths were of ischemic origin. In a multivariate logistic regression model that included the variables present on admission in the whole study population, the ejection fraction (hazard ratio 0.95, 95% confidence interval 0.94 to 0.97; p <0.001), hemoglobin level (hazard ratio 0.85, 95% confidence interval 0.76 to 0.94; p = 0.001), older age (hazard ratio 1.05, 95% confidence interval 1.01 to 1.10, p = 0.010), and creatinine clearance (hazard ratio 0.99, 95% confidence interval 0.97 to 0.99; p = 0.030) were the independent predictors of all-cause death at 1 year. In conclusion, within 1 year after admission for non-ST-segment elevation acute coronary syndromes, most deaths in patients aged ≥75 years have a cardiac origin, mostly owing to myocardial ischemia.
Full-text · Article · Mar 2013 · The American journal of cardiology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To investigate the influence of the availability of drug eluting stents (DES) on treatment choice (TC) among medical therapy (MT), coronary by-pass surgery (CABG) or percutaneous coronary interventions (PCI) and the consequent clinical outcomes in patients hospitalised because of coronary artery disease (CAD).
Observational study comparing two cohorts hospitalised immediately before, and 3 years after DES availability.
Thirteen hospitals with cardiology facilities.
2131 consecutive patients with at least one coronary stenosis >50% at coronary angiography (CA) after exclusion of those with acute myocardial infarction or previous CABG or associated relevant valvular disease.
Treatment choice after CA and 4-year clinical outcomes.
TC among MT (27% vs 29.2%), PCI (58.6% vs 55.5%) and CABG (14.5% vs 15.3%) was similar in the DES and bare metal stent (BMS) periods (p = 0.51). At least one DES was implanted in 57% of patients treated with PCI in 2005. After 4 years, no difference in mortality (13.8% vs 13.2%, p = 0.72), hospital admissions for myocardial infarction (6.6% vs 5.2%, p = 0.26), stroke (2.2% vs 1.7%, p = 0.49) and further revascularisations (22.3% vs 19.7%, p = 0.25) were observed in patients enrolled in the DES and BMS periods. Only in patients with Syntax score 23-32 a significant change of TC (p = 0.0002) occurred in the DES versus BMS period: MT in 17.4% vs 31%, PCI in 62.2% vs 35.8%, CABG in 20.3% vs 33.2%, with similar 4-year combined end-point of mortality, stroke, myocardial infarction and further revascularisations (45.3% vs 34.2%, p = 0.087).
Three years after DES availability, the TC in patients with CAD has not changed significantly as well as the 4-year incidence of death, myocardial infarction, stroke and further revascularisations. In subgroup with Syntax score 23-32, a significant increase of indications to PCI was observed in the DES period, without any improvement of the 4-year clinical outcome.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We sought to evaluate the prognostic impact of age on the procedural results and subsequent clinical outcomes in patients with multivessel disease (MVD) treated either by coronary artery bypass surgery (CABG) or by percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) with or without drug eluting stents, based on data of the Arterial Revascularisation Therapies Study (ARTS) part I and part II. The potential influence of age in determining the most appropriate revascularisation strategy for patients with MVD is largely unknown.
Three year clinical outcome of ARTS I patients randomised to PCI with bare metal stent (BMS) (n= 600) or CABG (n= 605), and matched patients treated by PCI with sirolimus-eluting stents (SES) in ARTS II (n= 607) were reviewed according to four age quartiles. Endpoints were measured in terms of major adverse cardiac and cerebrovascular events MACCE) during hospital stay and up to three years. The frequency of female, diabetes, hypertension, peripheral vascular disease, pulmonary disease, as well as lesion complexity increased with age. At three years, MACCE free survival was comparable between patients treated by CABG or SES PCI, regardless of age quartile. The incidence of MACCE was higher among ARTS I BMS treated patients in all but the second age quartile. This was primarily related to a higher need for repeat revascularisation among BMS treated patients. However, age, which emerged as a strong independent predictor of MACCE following CABG (p<0.005), was not predictive of adverse events following PCI. Conversely, diabetes was the strongest independent predictor of MACCE among PCI treated patients (p<0.02), but didn't affect three-year outcomes following CABG.
Age seems to influence the CABG outcome in-hospital but not PCI. PCI-SES could offer lower immediate risk in patients with MVD and comparable long-term outcome as CABG especially in older patients. The worst outcome of PCI-BMS group is primarily related to the need for repeat revascularisation. Diabetes is the most important predictor of MACCE following PCI.
No preview · Article · Feb 2011 · EuroIntervention: journal of EuroPCR in collaboration with the Working Group on Interventional Cardiology of the European Society of Cardiology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A high proportion of patients with ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) are evaluated more than 12 h after symptom onset. In this setting, current guidelines suggest that mechanical reperfusion should be considered for patients with clinical and/or electrocardiographic evidence of ongoing ischaemia, re-infarction, cardiogenic shock, haemodynamic instability, or documented ejection fraction less than 40% and serious ventricular arrhythmias. Moreover, some adjunctive aspects like the stuttering course of acute myocardial infarction, the chance of an existing coronary collateral circulation, the ischaemic preconditioning and the infarct-related artery patency should be taken into consideration for patients with STEMI presenting from 12 to 72 h after symptom onset. These patients are known as 'early' latecomers. The aim of the present review is to summarize the current knowledge of the pathophysiology related to this topic and to suggest some new indications for primary percutaneous coronary intervention in 'early' latecomers.
No preview · Article · Jan 2011 · Journal of Cardiovascular Medicine
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We examined association of inducible myocardial perfusion defects with cardiorenal biomarkers, and of diminished left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) with kidney injury marker plasma neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL). Patients undergoing nuclear myocardial perfusion stress imaging were divided into 2 groups. Biomarkers were analyzed pre- and poststress testing. Compared to the patients in the low ischemia group (n = 16), the patients in the high ischemia group (n = 18) demonstrated a significantly greater rise in cardiac biomarkers plasma BNP, NT-proBNP and cTnI. Subjects were also categorized based on pre- or poststress test detectable plasma NGAL. With stress, the group with no detectable NGAL had a segmental defect score 4.2 compared to 8.2 (P = .06) in the detectable NGAL group, and 0.9 vs. 3.8 (P = .03) at rest. BNP rose with stress to a greater degree in patients with detectable NGAL (10.2 vs. 3.5 pg/mL, P = .03). LVEF at rest and with stress was significantly lower in the detectable NGAL group; 55.8 versus 65.0 (P = .03) and 55.1 vs. 63.8 (P = .04), respectively. Myocardial perfusion defects associate with biomarkers of cardiac stress, and detectable plasma NGAL with significantly lower LVEF, suggesting a specific heart-kidney link.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Atrial fibrillation is the most common arrhythmia in clinical practice. Its treatment is still widely debated due to the large variety of therapeutic options. Radiofrequency catheter ablation (RFCA) around pulmonary vein ostia and in the left atrium has been proposed as a technique to cure atrial fibrillation and is now performed with increasing success worldwide. However, few randomized controlled trials (RCTs) are available. Some of these have been published recently and are not yet included in meta-analyses.
We conducted a meta-analysis to summarize the current evidence base for the efficacy and safety of RFCA in patients with atrial fibrillation.
We searched electronic databases for relevant RCTs comparing RFCA with antiarrhythmic drugs for the management of atrial fibrillation. Recurrence of any atrial tachyarrhythmia (including atrial fibrillation, atrial flutter and atrial tachycardia) and rate of complications and adverse events were the end-points of the analysis. The results are reported as relative risk and 95% confidence interval, calculated using RevMan 5.
A total of eight RCTs were identified including 844 patients. Overall, 98 (23.2%) of 421 patients in the treatment group and 324 (76.6%) of 423 patients in the control group had atrial tachyarrhythmia recurrence. RFCA decreased atrial tachyarrhythmia recurrence by 71% (relative risk 0.29, 95% confidence interval 0.20-0.41, P < 0.00001, with random effects model). Fewer complications and adverse events were reported in the ablation group compared with the control group (relative risk 0.72, 95% confidence interval 0.40-1.30, P = 0.28, with random effects model).
In selected patients with atrial fibrillation, RFCA is a relatively effective and well-tolerated procedure to cure atrial fibrillation. Even though the results of our systematic review favour ablation therapy, large, well-designed RCTs are needed to confirm the efficacy and safety of RFCA for the management of atrial fibrillation.
No preview · Article · Oct 2009 · Journal of Cardiovascular Medicine
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Spontaneous coronary artery dissection (SCAD) is an unusual cause of acute myocardial ischemia that in almost 50% of cases is followed by sudden death. The increasing frequency of SCAD diagnosis may reflect the widespread use of coronary angiography and percutaneous coronary interventions in acute coronary syndromes (ACS). The incidence of SCAD is estimated between 0.1 and 0.28% of all ACS or sudden deaths evaluated by angiography or by anatomical examination, respectively. Most published data available so far deal with single case reports and probably the real incidence of this disease is underestimated. Some predisposing conditions to SCAD are well known and include Marfan syndrome, pregnancy and peripartum state, drug abuse and some anatomical abnormalities of the coronary arteries like aneurysms and severe kinking. The most appropriate therapeutic approach to SCAD is still controversial and decision making is often based on the clinical presentation, extent of dissection and amount of ischemic myocardium.
The purpose of this multicenter prospective registry, named DISCOVERY (DISsection of COronary arteries: Veneto and Emilia RegistrY), with a case-control group is to try to assess the role of SCAD in the pathogenesis of ACS. The primary endpoint is the occurrence of major adverse cardiovascular events related to the therapeutic strategy in the acute phase and in the mid-term follow-up. The secondary endpoints are the estimation of the prevalence of SCAD in the pathogenesis of ACS, the association or disassociation of SCAD with presumptive predisposing factors, the appreciation of the timing and extent of multivessel involvement when present, the occurrence of vascular and ocular comorbidities (i.e. carotid dissection and ocular lens abnormalities), the evaluation of the immediate success and the mid-term outcome of percutaneous coronary interventions and the definition of the role of intravascular ultrasound in diagnosis and treatment of SCAD. The enrollment of approximately 50 patients with SCAD is planned. A planned control group of patients of comparable age, sex and clinical presentation will allow us to identify potential peculiar or specific aspects of SCAD in any phase of the disease.
The DISCOVERY multicenter registry, with a case-control group, is the first large prospective study aimed at assessing the role of SCAD in the pathogenesis of ACS and at identifying the role of different therapeutic strategies in this unusual, multifaceted and probably underestimated pathologic condition.
No preview · Article · Feb 2009 · Journal of Cardiovascular Medicine
No preview · Article · Jan 2009 · The quarterly journal of nuclear medicine and molecular imaging: official publication of the Italian Association of Nuclear Medicine (AIMN) [and] the International Association of Radiopharmacology (IAR), [and] Section of the Society of...
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) is routinely performed in patients with non-ST elevation acute coronary syndromes after pretreatment with clopidogrel and periprocedural administration of unfractionated heparin on a weight-adjusted basis. Although activated clotting time (ACT) monitoring is encouraged to verify the adequacy of anticoagulation during the procedures, this is not a common practice in many laboratories. The authors describe 4 cases of patients with bifurcation lesions involving the left anterior descending coronary artery, who developed periprocedural thrombosis with acute transmural ischemia. All patients had inadequate ACT measurements, despite conventional heparin dosage and ongoing clopidogrel treatment. In order to achieve complete anticoagulation, patients were switched to bivalirudin, which determined a prompt effect on measured ACT. This therapeutic regimen, coupled with further intervention, allowed resolution of the thrombotic complication without bleeding. This report suggests the feasibility of a strategy of bivalirudin use in patients who have some degree of heparin 'resistance' in the setting of complicated PCI.
No preview · Article · Dec 2008 · The Journal of invasive cardiology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To compare clinical characteristics, procedure complexity, acute and long-term outcome of 'ablate and pace' (A&P) with pulmonary vein isolation (PVI) in patients with drug-refractory atrial fibrillation (AF). So far, only few small studies have compared the two procedures.
We analysed retrospectively a cohort of symptomatic consecutive patients with drug-refractory AF. Group 1 included 100 patients treated with A&P and Group 2 included 144 patients treated with PVI. Group 1 patients were older (74 +/- 8 vs. 56 +/- 9 years; P < 0.0001), had lower left ventricular ejection fraction (50 +/- 13% vs. 59 +/- 7%; P < 0.05), and a lower prevalence of paroxysmal AF (46% vs. 65%; P < 0.05). Acute success was not statistically different (98% vs. 92.3%, P = ns). Group 1 patients had shorter procedure time and lower radiation exposure with respect to Group 2 patients (70 +/- 15 vs. 204 +/- 58 min, and 8 +/- 4 vs. 57 +/- 22 min; P < 0.0001, respectively). After a median follow-up of 29 months (I, III quartile; 15, 40 months) vs. 25 months (I, III quartile; 8, 36 months) (P = ns), all the patients in Group 1 were free of symptomatic AF, while 113 patients (79%) of Group 2 were in stable sinus rhythm (P < 0.0001). Persistent or permanent AF has been documented in 58 patients (58%) of Group 1 vs. 11 (8%) of Group 2 (P < 0.0001).
In this series (i) patients treated with A&P and PVI for drug-refractory AF showed significant differences in clinical profile; (ii) A&P is a shorter and less complex procedure, but is associated with a higher rate of persistent AF; (iii) symptomatic recurrences of paroxysmal AF were more frequent in PVI group. Randomized studies appear necessary to identify the best strategy in selected cases.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We report two cases in which intra-aortic balloon pump (IABP) was used successfully as a bridge to cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) to treat patients with refractory systolic heart failure. The study was designed to assess the acute haemodynamic effects of IABP coupled with CRT using standard haemodynamic monitoring. In both cases, a marked elevation of V-wave in pulmonary capillary wedge pressure (PCWP) was shown, and a moderate-to-severe functional mitral regurgitation was observed. IABP and CRT resulted in a significant acute improvement in aortic pressure, PCWP, and V-wave amplitude compared with baseline measurements and IABP alone. These results provide a basis for studies examining the haemodynamic effects of IABP support associated with CRT in patients with heart failure refractory to medical therapy.
No preview · Article · Aug 2008 · Journal of Cardiovascular Medicine
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Right ventricular function may be reduced in patients with idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy (IDC). The prognostic implications of right ventricular dysfunction have not been investigated in this group of patients.
In a series of 120 consecutive patients with IDC [defined as a left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) < 55%, normal coronary arteries and no other causes for left ventricular dysfunction], right ventricular function was prospectively evaluated by means of angiocardiography at the time of catheterization. A head-to-head comparison of ventricular volumes, ejection fraction, end-diastolic pressure, stroke work index and end-systolic pressure/volume ratio of the left and right ventricle was performed according to the Cox's proportional hazard method for the pre-defined end-point of transplant-free survival.
In the study population, LVEF was 31 +/- 11% and right ventricular ejection fraction (RVEF) was 34 +/- 10%. After a mean follow-up of 30 months (range 12-120 months), 26 patients died (22%) and 14 (12%) underwent heart transplantation. At univariate analysis, all the above mentioned parameters were significantly (P < 0.0001) associated with outcome except left and right ventricular end-systolic pressure/volume ratio. At multivariate analysis, independent predictors of transplant-free survival were RVEF (P = 0.001), right ventricular stroke work index (P = 0.015), right ventricular end-diastolic volume (P = 0.034) and left ventricular end-diastolic volume (P = 0.048), but not LVEF. The same relation holds true considering the end point of total mortality.
Parameters of right ventricular function are strong predictors of survival in IDC, even in patients enrolled over a wide range of LVEFs. The present study suggests that right ventricular function should be evaluated in patients with IDC. A large non-invasive based study on right ventricular function in IDC appears to be warranted.
No preview · Article · Oct 2006 · Journal of Cardiovascular Medicine
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The authors describe primary coronary intervention consisting of direct stenting after abciximab administration in a case of acute anterior myocardial infarction occurring in a heart transplant recipient with triple-vessel disease. Primary success was obtained and the patient survived to a one-year angiographic follow up which showed persistent coronary patency. This is the first report concerning the use of abciximab in primary stenting for acute myocardial infarction in allograft coronary artery disease.
No preview · Article · May 2006 · The Journal of invasive cardiology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We sought to determine whether an invasive approach based on Swan-Ganz catheterization, coupled with a pharmacologic stressor, might help stratify prognosis in patients with severe heart failure and uniformly depressed indices of cardiac function.
We studied 31 unselected consecutive patients with scalar doses of dobutamine (2.5-10 microg/kg/min) after baseline hemodynamic evaluation. Changes in stroke work index (SWI) from baseline to peak effect (stroke work reserve, SWR) were recorded, and patients classified as responders (SWR above the median) or non-responders to dobutamine (SWR below the median). One-year follow-up data were recorded.
All patients completed the dobutamine challenge test without complications. Dobuta-mine increased SWI from 17+/-9 to 26+/-13 mg/ beat/m2 (P<0.0001 vs baseline), with a median increase of 6.4 g/beat/m2. Basal SWI was not related to stroke work reserve. The only predictor of response to dobutamine was a smaller left ventricular end-diastolic volume (135+/-28 vs 205+/-90 mL/m2; P=0.007). After 1 year, only 7 patients were alive, while 10 had successful transplantation. Transplant-free survival was 47% in responders vs 0% in non responders (P=0.007). At multivariate analysis, none of baseline hemodynamic parameters was predictive of survival. Only age and a SWR above the median were significant independent predictors of survival in this model.
This study allows us to draw the following conclusions: 1) 1-year mortality in severe heart failure remains extremely high; 2) baseline hemodynamics dos not predict survival; 3) a positive response to dobutamine identifies a subgroup with significant lower mortality at 1 year; 4) this response is an independent predictor of survival and is more likely to occur in the presence of a less dilated left ventricle.
No preview · Article · May 2006 · Minerva cardioangiologica