Publications by authors named "Carmelo La Greca"

13 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Advantages of the integration of ICE and 3D electroanatomical mapping and ultrasound-guided femoral venipuncture in catheter ablation of atrial fibrillation.

J Interv Card Electrophysiol 2020 Aug 18. Epub 2020 Aug 18.

Electrophysiology Unit, Cardiovascular Department, Poliambulanza Institute Hospital Foundation, Brescia, Italy.

Purpose: To evaluate how the integration of intracardiac echocardiography (ICE) and ultrasound-guided femoral venipuncture (USGVC) may affect the safety of catheter ablation (CA) of atrial fibrillation (AF).

Methods: From a single center 374 patients with AF underwent 3D electroanatomic mapping-guided CA with or without the integration of ICE and USGVC. The primary endpoints were periprocedural complications, fluoroscopy time, and procedure time between the two groups.

Results: The median age of patients was 60 years. Sixteen patients had major complications (4.3%); 10 of these (2.7%) had major vascular complications. Thirty-seven patients had minor complications (9.9%) that did not require intervention. There were fewer major complications in the CA with the aid of ICE and USGVC than in the conventional approach (1% vs 7%, p = 0.004). The combined approach required less fluoroscopy time than the conventional procedure (median with ICE + USGVC 14 min (interquartile range (IQR) 8-21) vs median without ICE + USGVC 22 min (IQR 17-32)), p < 0.001, and less radiofrequency time (median with ICE + USGVC 1686 s (IQR 1367-1998) vs median time without ICE + USGVC: 1792 s (IQR 1390-2400)), p = 0.012. After adjustment for confounding factors, only the use of ICE + USGVC (hazard ratio: 0.139; p = 0.05) was a significantly protective factor against major complications.

Conclusion: The use of ICE and USGVC in CA of AF is associated with significantly fewer major complications and lower fluoroscopy and radiofrequency time, so these aids increased the safety of the procedure.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10840-020-00835-6DOI Listing
August 2020

[An unusual presentation of cardiac involvement during the COVID-19 pandemic].

G Ital Cardiol (Rome) 2020 Aug;21(8):594-597

Unità di Diagnostica Non Invasiva, Dipartimento Cardiovascolare, Fondazione Poliambulanza Istituto Ospedaliero, Brescia.

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 may affect the cardiovascular system and cause acute cardiac injury. Other authors described cases of myocarditis with reduced systolic function and/or a life-threatening presentation. We describe the clinical course of an unusual presentation with isolated reversible high degree atrioventricular block in a patient with COVID-19. In this case, a "wait and see approach" avoided an unnecessary permanent pacemaker implantation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1714/3405.33891DOI Listing
August 2020

Prospective evaluation of the multisensor HeartLogic algorithm for heart failure monitoring.

Clin Cardiol 2020 Jul 18;43(7):691-697. Epub 2020 Apr 18.

Cardiology Division, Università Politecnica delle Marche, Ancona, Italy.

Background: The HeartLogic algorithm measures data from multiple implantable cardioverter-defibrillator-based sensors and combines them into a single index. The associated alert has proved to be a sensitive and timely predictor of impending heart failure (HF) decompensation.

Hypothesis: We describe a multicenter experience of remote HF management by means of HeartLogic and appraise the value of an alert-based follow-up strategy.

Methods: The alert was activated in 104 patients. All patients were followed up according to a standardized protocol that included remote data reviews and patient phone contacts every month and at the time of alerts. In-office examinations were performed every 6 months or when deemed necessary.

Results: During a median follow-up of 13 (10-16) months, the overall number of HF hospitalizations was 16 (rate 0.15 hospitalizations/patient-year) and 100 alerts were reported in 53 patients. Sixty alerts were judged clinically meaningful, and were associated with multiple HF-related conditions. In 48 of the 60 alerts, the clinician was not previously aware of the condition. Of these 48 alerts, 43 triggered clinical actions. The rate of alerts judged nonclinically meaningful was 0.37/patient-year, and the rate of hospitalizations not associated with an alert was 0.05/patient-year. Centers performed remote follow-up assessments of 1113 scheduled monthly transmissions (10.3/patient-year) and 100 alerts (0.93/patient-year). Monthly remote data review allowed to detect 11 (1%) HF events requiring clinical actions (vs 43% actionable alerts, P < .001).

Conclusions: HeartLogic allowed relevant HF-related clinical conditions to be identified remotely and enabled effective clinical actions to be taken; the rates of unexplained alerts and undetected HF events were low. An alert-based management strategy seemed more efficient than a scheduled monthly remote follow-up scheme.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/clc.23366DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7368302PMC
July 2020

Catheter ablation of atrial fibrillation in heart failure: clinical, prognostic, and echocardiographic outcome.

J Interv Card Electrophysiol 2021 Mar 1;60(2):221-229. Epub 2020 Apr 1.

Division of Cardiology, Poliambulanza Institute Hospital Foundation, Brescia, Italy.

Purpose: Catheter ablation (CA) for atrial fibrillation (AF) in heart failure (HF) patients is associated with a lower rate of cardiac events compared with medical therapy. This study deals with the clinical, echocardiographic, and prognostic outcomes in these patients. Prognostic scores, as MAGGIC (Meta-analysis Global Group in Chronic Heart Failure) score, may help to predict the outcomes.

Methods: From a single center, 47 patients with AF, HF, and left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) < 50% underwent CA. The primary endpoints were NYHA functional class, LVEF, and MAGGIC score.

Results: The median age of patients was 59 years; 49% had paroxysmal AF. At 12 months, a significant improvement of NYHA class (median before II [interquartile range (IQR) II-III] vs median after I [IQR I-II]) and of LVEF (median before 44% [IQR 37-47] vs median after 55% [IQR49-57]) was observed (p value < 0.001). The MAGGIC 1-year and 3-year probability of death was estimated before (mean score 13 [IQR 11-17]) and at 12-month (mean score 11 [IQR 8-13]), showing a significant decrease in the probability of death (p value <0.001). At 12-month, a lower LVEF was associated with more HF hospitalizations (p value 0.035). Coronary artery disease (CAD) (HR 5, p value 0.035) and MAGGIC score (HR 1.2, p value 0.030) were predictors of HF hospitalization.

Conclusions: CA for AF in HF patients was associated with a significant improvement of NYHA functional class and LVEF and a higher life expectation. CAD history, LVEF < 40%, and MAGGIC score before ablation were predictors of HF hospitalization.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10840-020-00727-9DOI Listing
March 2021

ICD-measured heart sounds and their correlation with echocardiographic indexes of systolic and diastolic function.

J Interv Card Electrophysiol 2020 Jun 4;58(1):95-101. Epub 2020 Jan 4.

Unità Operativa di Elettrofisiologia, Studio e Terapia delle Aritmie, Monaldi Hospital, Naples, Italy.

Background: Novel implantable defibrillators (ICDs) allow first (S1) and third (S3) heart sounds to be measured by means of an embedded accelerometer. ICD-measured S1 and S3 have been shown to significantly correlate with hemodynamic changes in acute animal models. The HeartLogic algorithm (Boston Scientific) measures and combines multiple parameters, including S3 and S1, into a single index to predict impending heart failure decompensation. We evaluated the echocardiographic correlates of ICD-measured S1 and S3 in patients with ICD and cardiac resynchronization therapy ICD.

Methods: The HeartLogic feature was activated in 104 patients. During in-office visits, patients underwent echocardiographic evaluation, and parameters of systolic and diastolic function were correlated with S3 and S1 amplitude measured on the same day as the visit.

Results: S3 amplitude inversely correlated with deceleration time of the E-wave (r = -0.32; 95% CI -0.46 - -0.17; P < 0.001), and S1 amplitude significantly correlated with left ventricular ejection fraction (r = 0.17; 95% CI 0.03-0.30; P = 0.021). S3 > 0.9 mG detected a restrictive filling pattern with 85% (95% CI 72%-93%) sensitivity and 82% (95% CI 75%-88%) specificity, while S1 < 1.5 mG detected ejection fraction < 35% with 28% (95% CI 19%-40%) sensitivity and 88% (95% CI 80%-93%) specificity.

Conclusion: ICD-measured heart sound parameters are significantly correlated with echocardiographic indexes of systolic and diastolic function. This confirms their utility for remote patient monitoring when used as single sensors and their potential relevance when considered in combination with other physiological ICD sensors that evaluate various aspects of heart failure physiology.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10840-019-00668-yDOI Listing
June 2020

Subcutaneous implantable cardioverter defibrillator in patients with arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy: Results from an Italian multicenter registry.

Int J Cardiol 2019 04 12;280:74-79. Epub 2019 Jan 12.

Department of Cardiac, Thoracic and Vascular Sciences, University of Padova, Italy. Electronic address:

Background: Despite expanding indication of the subcutaneous implantable cardioverter defibrillator (S-ICD) in clinical practice, limited data exists on safety and efficacy of S-ICD in arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy (ARVC) patients. The aim of this multicenter study was to evaluate the safety and efficacy of S-ICD in ARVC patients.

Methods: The study population included 44 consecutive patients with definite ARVC diagnosis according to the 2010 ITF criteria (57% male, mean age 37 ± 17 years [range 10-75 years]) who received an S-ICD. Eighteen (41%) patients were implanted for secondary prevention.

Results: At implant, all inducible patients (34/44) had conversion of ventricular fibrillation at 65 J. No early complications occurred. During a median follow-up of 12 months (7-19), 3 (6.8%) patients experienced complications requiring surgical revision. No local or systemic device-related infections were observed. Six patients (14%) received a total of 61 appropriate and successful shocks on ventricular arrhythmias. Six (14%) patients experienced 8 inappropriate shocks for oversensing of cardiac signal (4 cases) and non-cardiac signal (4 cases) with one patient requiring device explantation. No patients had the device explanted due to the need for antitachycardia pacing.

Conclusions: The study shows that S-ICD provides safe and effective therapy for termination of both induced and spontaneous malignant ventricular tachyarrhythmias with high energy shocks in ARVC patients, but the risk of inappropriate shocks and complications needing surgical revision should be considered.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijcard.2019.01.041DOI Listing
April 2019

Preliminary experience with the multisensor HeartLogic algorithm for heart failure monitoring: a retrospective case series report.

ESC Heart Fail 2019 Apr 11;6(2):308-318. Epub 2019 Jan 11.

"Unità Operativa di Elettrofisiologia, Studio e Terapia delle Aritmie", Monaldi Hospital, Naples, Italy.

Aims: In the Multisensor Chronic Evaluation in Ambulatory Heart Failure Patients study, a novel algorithm for heart failure (HF) monitoring was implemented. The HeartLogic (Boston Scientific) index combines data from multiple implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD)-based sensors and has proved to be a sensitive and timely predictor of impending HF decompensation. The remote monitoring of HF patients by means of HeartLogic has never been described in clinical practice. We report post-implantation data collected from sensors, the combined index, and their association with clinical events during follow-up in a group of patients who received a HeartLogic-enabled device in clinical practice.

Methods And Results: Patients with ICD and cardiac resynchronization therapy ICD were remotely monitored. In December 2017, the HeartLogic feature was activated on the remote monitoring platform, and multiple ICD-based sensor data collected since device implantation were made available: HeartLogic index, heart rate, heart sounds, thoracic impedance, respiration, and activity. Their association with clinical events was retrospectively analysed. Data from 58 patients were analysed. During a mean follow-up of 5 ± 3 months, the HeartLogic index crossed the threshold value (set by default to 16) 24 times (over 24 person-years, 0.99 alerts/patient-year) in 16 patients. HeartLogic alerts preceded five HF hospitalizations and five unplanned in-office visits for HF. Symptoms or signs of HF were also reported at the time of five scheduled visits. The median early warning time and the time spent in alert were longer in the case of hospitalizations than in the case of minor events of clinical deterioration of HF. HeartLogic contributing sensors detected changes in heart sound amplitude (increased third sound and decreased first sound) in all cases of alerts. Patients with HeartLogic alerts during the observation period had higher New York Heart Association class (P = 0.025) and lower ejection fraction (P = 0.016) at the time of activation.

Conclusions: Our retrospective analysis indicates that the HeartLogic algorithm might be useful to detect gradual worsening of HF and to stratify risk of HF decompensation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ehf2.12394DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6437441PMC
April 2019

Subcutaneous implantable cardioverter defibrillator implantation: An analysis of Italian clinical practice and its evolution.

Int J Cardiol 2018 Dec 31;272:162-167. Epub 2018 Jul 31.

Second Cardiology Division, Cardio-Thoracic and Vascular Department, University Hospital of Pisa, Pisa, Italy.

Background: The subcutaneous implantable cardioverter defibrillator (S-ICD) is a relatively novel alternative to the transvenous ICD for the treatment of life-threatening ventricular arrhythmias, and is currently used in the clinical practice of several centers. The aim of this analysis was to describe current Italian practice regarding S-ICD implantation and its evolution over the years.

Methods: We analyzed 607 consecutive patients (78% male, 48 ± 16 years) who underwent S-ICD implantation in 39 Italian centers from 2013 to 2017.

Results: Structural cardiomyopathy was present in 78% of patients and 30% of patients received their device for secondary prevention. The proportion of patients with dilated cardiomyopathy and with left ventricular ejection fraction ≤35% increased from ≤2014 to 2017 (from 38% to 58%, from 33% to 53%, respectively; both p < 0.05). Almost all procedures (97%) were performed in electrophysiology laboratories. Over the last 4 years, the 2-incision implantation technique has been widely adopted, with sub- or inter-muscular positioning of the generator, under local anesthesia or deep sedation (≤2014 versus 2017: all p < 0.001). Defibrillation testing was performed in 81% of patients. Shock energy of ≤65 J was successful in 93.9% of patients and the overall cardioversion success rate at ≤80 J was 99.8%.

Conclusions: Our analysis confirmed that the S-ICD continues to be preferentially used in specific patients (younger, less frequently with dilated cardiomyopathy and low ejection fraction.). Nonetheless, we noted a trend toward the wider use of S-ICD in patients with dilated cardiomyopathy and systolic dysfunction over the years. Novel approaches have been adopted while the acute efficacy of the system has remained stably high.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijcard.2018.07.139DOI Listing
December 2018

[Pelvic splenomegaly. Ptosic, migrant or accessory spleen?].

Ann Ital Chir 2009 Sep-Oct;80(5):395-7

Azienda Ospedaliera Universitaria Vittorio Emanuele-Ferrarotto- S. Bambino Catania.

A wandering or ectopic spleen is a rare condition in which the spleen is not located in the left upper quadrant but is found lower in the abdomen or in the pelvic region caused by improper fixation of the ligamentous attachments. Laxity of the peritoneal attachments of the spleen results in splenic hyper mobility, known as wandering spleen. Congenital and acquired causes have been advocated to explain its onset. However, the precise aetiology is not completely understood. Many patients with wandering spleen are asymptomatic and therefore, the real incidence is unknown. Symptomatic patients may have intermittent abdominal pain because of splenic congestion with intermittent torsion of the splenic pedicle and its spontaneous detorsion, or may present acutely with pedicle torsion with subsequent infarction. Pain and dangerous potential evolution recommend surgery, splenoplexy or splenectomy. The Authors report the case of a 48-year-old man with painful abdominal mass suspected for wandering splenomegaly after diagnostic imaging (abdominal Ultrasonography and TC). Laparotomy evidenced a large spleen (DL 22 cm.) with a long (1 mt) and tortuous vascular pedicle, both removed. Histopathologic examination showed partial infarction of the spleen. The postoperative course was uneventful.
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March 2010

Sudden onset sensorineural hearing loss caused by meningeal carcinomatosis secondary to occult malignancy: report of two cases.

Auris Nasus Larynx 2010 Aug 28;37(4):515-8. Epub 2009 Dec 28.

Institute of Otorhinolaringology, Policlinico A. Gemelli, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Largo F. Vito, 8, 00168 Roma, Italy.

Meningeal carcinomatosis (MC) is an uncommon form of metastasis of solid tumors. In the absence of clinical meningeal or parenchymal involvements, the sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL) as the starting symptom of MC is very infrequent. We report the history of two patients affected by MC who presented first with progressive SNHL. In both cases the early magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) finding mimicked bilateral masses in the cerebellopontine angle (CPA). Only the histopathologic result and surgical biopsy in cases 1 and 2, respectively, identified masses secondary to occult malignancy. However the available investigations could not discover the primary site of metastatic carcinoma. Despite the poor prognosis, because of the rarity and severity of MC we consider important to make known our experience in order to consider metastatic tumors in the differential diagnosis for sudden SNHL.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.anl.2009.11.003DOI Listing
August 2010

Antioxidant protection against acoustic trauma by coadministration of idebenone and vitamin E.

Neuroreport 2008 Feb;19(3):277-81

Institute of Human Physiology , Catholic University of Rome (UCSC), Italy.

Idebenone, a synthetic analogue of coenzyme Q, attenuates noise-induced hearing loss by virtue of its antioxidant properties. This study involves a guinea pig model of acoustic trauma where the effectiveness of idebenone is analyzed in comparison with Vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol) that exhibits a potent antioxidant activity in the inner ear. Idebenone and vitamin E were injected intraperitoneally 1 h before noise exposure and once daily for three days; functional and morphological studies were then carried out, respectively, by auditory brainstem responses evaluation, scanning electron microscopy and terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick end labelling assay identification of missing and apoptotic cells was also performed. The results showed that the protective effects of idebenone and vitamin E were not additive implying that the two antioxidants may share competitive mechanisms.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/WNR.0b013e3282f50c66DOI Listing
February 2008

Angioleiomyoma of the external auditory canal.

Am J Otolaryngol 2007 Jul-Aug;28(4):235-7

Institute of Otorhinolaryngology, Catholic University of the Sacred Heart, Rome, Italy.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.amjoto.2006.08.011DOI Listing
September 2007

Lack of association between inherited thrombophilic risk factors and idiopathic sudden sensorineural hearing loss in Italian patients.

Ann Otol Rhinol Laryngol 2006 Mar;115(3):195-200

Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Catholic University of the Sacred Heart, Rome, Italy.

Objectives: We investigated the presence of congenital thrombophilic risk factors in a population of consecutive Italian patients affected by idiopathic sudden sensorineural hearing loss (SSNHL).

Methods: We investigated 48 patients with idiopathic SSNHL for the presence of congenital thrombophilic risk factors. The factor V Leiden G1691A, the prothrombin G20210A allele, and methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) C677T genotypes were investigated. Allele frequencies and genotype distribution of all factors found in patients were compared to those of 48 healthy subjects of the same ethnic background by Chi2 and odds-ratio analysis. Odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals were calculated for allele and genotype frequencies of all thrombophilia variants. Statistical significance was accepted with a p value of less than .05. We also performed the following blood tests: hemacytometric analysis including platelet count, prothrombin time, activated partial thromboplastin time, fibrinogen, erythrocyte sedimentation rate, C-reactive protein, protein S, protein C, antithrombin III, and activated protein C resistance.

Results: In our series, we did not find an association between SSNHL and abnormal levels of antithrombin III, protein C, protein S, D-dimer, or fibrinogen; activated protein C resistance; or factor V G1691A, prothrombin G20210A, or MTHFR C677T mutations.

Conclusions: At present, the few studies regarding genetic polymorphisms of congenital thrombophilic factors in SSNHL are not conclusive. According to our data, factor V G1691A, prothrombin G20210A, and MTHFR C677T variants should be not considered risk factors for SSNHL. Further large prospective studies are needed to provide currently lacking information and to improve our knowledge in the field before we recommend the determination of genetic polymorphism in SSNHL as routine practice.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/000348940611500307DOI Listing
March 2006