Publications by authors named "Tetsuzo Wakatsuki"

126 Publications

Evaluation of the input site and characteristics of the antegrade fast pathway based on three-dimensional bi-atrial stimulus-ventricle mapping.

J Interv Card Electrophysiol 2021 Jul 7. Epub 2021 Jul 7.

Department of Cardiology, Tokushima University Hospital, 3-18-15 Kuramoto-cho, Tokushima City, Tokushima, 770-8501, Japan.

Purpose: Previous studies examined the right atrial (RA) input site of the antegrade fast pathway (AFp) (AFpI). However, the left atrial (LA) input to the atrioventricular (AV) node has not been extensively evaluated. In this study, we created three-dimensional (3-D) bi-atrial stimulus-ventricle (St-V) maps and analyzed the input site and characteristics of the AFp in both the RA and LA.

Methods: Forty-four patients diagnosed with atrial fibrillation or WPW syndrome were included in this study. Three-dimensional bi-atrial St-V mapping was performed using an electroanatomical mapping system. Sites exhibiting the minimal St-V interval (MinSt-V) were defined as AFpIs and were classified into seven segments, four in the RA (F, S, M, and I) and three in the LA (M1, M2, and M3). By combining the MinSt-V in the RA and LA, the AFpIs were classified into three types: RA, LA, and bi-atrial (BA) types. The clinical and electrophysiological characteristics were compared.

Results: AFpIs were most frequently observed at site S in the RA (34%) and M2 in the LA (50%), and the BA type was the most common (57%). AFpIs in the LA were recognized in 75% of the patients. There were no clinical or electrophysiological indicators for predicting AFpI sites.

Conclusions: Three-dimensional bi-atrial St-V maps could classify AFpIs in both the RA and LA. AFpIs in the LA were frequently recognized. There were no significant clinical or electrophysiological indicators for predicting AFpI sites, and 3-D bi-atrial St-V mapping was the only method to reveal the precise AFp input site.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10840-021-01026-7DOI Listing
July 2021

STING, a cytosolic DNA sensor, plays a critical role in atherogenesis: a link between innate immunity and chronic inflammation caused by lifestyle-related diseases.

Eur Heart J 2021 Jul 6. Epub 2021 Jul 6.

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Tokushima University Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, 3-18-15, Kuramoto-Cho, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan.

Aims : Lifestyle-related diseases promote atherosclerosis, a chronic inflammatory disease; however, the molecular mechanism remains largely unknown. Endogenous DNA fragments released under over-nutrient condition provoke sterile inflammation through the recognition by DNA sensors. Here, we investigated the role of stimulator of interferon genes (STING), a cytosolic DNA sensor, in atherogenesis.

Methods And Results : Apolipoprotein E-deficient (Apoe-/-) mice fed a western-type diet (WTD), a hypercholesterolaemic mouse model, showed higher STING expression and markers for DNA damage such as γH2AX, p53, and single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) accumulation in macrophages in the aorta compared with wild-type (WT) mice. The level of cGAMP, a STING agonist, in the aorta was higher in Apoe-/- mice. Genetic deletion of Sting in Apoe-/- mice reduced atherosclerotic lesions in the aortic arch, lipid, and macrophage accumulation in plaques, and inflammatory molecule expression in the aorta compared with the control. Pharmacological blockade of STING using a specific inhibitor, C-176, ameliorated atherogenesis in Apoe-/- mice. In contrast, bone marrow-specific STING expression in Apoe-/- mice stimulated atherogenesis. Expression or deletion of STING did not affect metabolic parameters and blood pressure. In vitro studies revealed that STING activation by cGAMP or mitochondrial DNA accelerated inflammatory molecule expression (e.g. TNF-α or IFN-β) in mouse and human macrophages. Activation of nuclear factor-κB and TANK binding kinase 1 was involved in STING-associated vascular inflammation and macrophage activation. Furthermore, human atherosclerotic lesions in the carotid arteries expressed STING and cGAMP.

Conclusion : Stimulator of interferon genes stimulates pro-inflammatory activation of macrophages, leading to the development of atherosclerosis. Stimulator of interferon genes signalling may serve as a potential therapeutic target for atherosclerosis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/eurheartj/ehab249DOI Listing
July 2021

Clinical Utility of Overlap Time for Incomplete Relaxation to Predict Cardiac Events in Heart Failure.

J Card Fail 2021 Jun 12. Epub 2021 Jun 12.

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Tokushima University Hospital.

Background: The overlap time of transmitral flow can be a novel marker of subclinical left ventricular dysfunction for predicting adverse events in heart failure (HF). We aimed to (1) investigate the role of overlap time of the E-A wave in association with clinical parameters and (2) evaluate whether the overlap time could add prognostic information with respect to other conventional clinical prognosticators in HF.

Methods: We prospectively evaluated 153 patients hospitalized with HF (mean age 68 ± 15 years; 63% male). The primary endpoint was readmission following HF or cardiac death.

Results: During a median period of 25 months, 43 patients were readmitted or died. Overlap time appeared to be associated with worse outcomes. After adjustment for readmission scores and ratios of diastolic filling period and cardiac cycle length in a Cox proportional-hazards model, overlap time was associated with event-free survival, independent of elevated left atrial pressure based on guidelines. When overlap time was added to the model based on clinical variables and elevated left atrial pressure, the C-statistic significantly improved from 0.70 (95% CI: 0.63-0.77) to 0.77 (95% CI: 0.69-0.83, compared) (P = 0.035).

Conclusion: This preliminary study suggested that prolonged overlap time may have potential for predicting readmission and cardiac mortality risk assessment in patients with HF.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cardfail.2021.05.018DOI Listing
June 2021

Predictive value of left atrial function for latent paroxysmal atrial fibrillation as the cause of embolic stroke of undetermined source.

J Cardiol 2021 Jun 9. Epub 2021 Jun 9.

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Tokushima University Hospital, Tokushima, Japan.

Background: In patients with embolic stroke of undetermined source (ESUS), paroxysmal atrial fibrillation (AF) is often diagnosed, however, the risk of paroxysmal AF in ESUS has not been well described. Several studies have suggested a linkage between left atrial (LA) functional parameters and risk of AF in stroke patients. The aim of this study was to assess the role of LA functional parameters as predictors of latent paroxysmal AF in ESUS on admission.

Methods: Between January 2015 and December 2019, consecutive stroke patients with suspected ESUS at admission were prospectively included in this study. They were under hospital electrocardiographic monitoring for detection of new-onset AF. Various echocardiographic parameters including left atrial strain were assessed for association with new-onset AF.

Results: We gathered 1082 consecutive patients with ischemic stroke. After exclusions, 121 patients with suspected ESUS at admission formed the study cohort. New-onset AF was detected in 46 (38%) patients during hospital electrocardiographic monitoring (median follow-up: 18 days). LA pump and reservoir strains were significantly and independently associated with new-onset AF. Receiver operating characteristic analysis for the association with new-onset AF showed that the areas under the curve (AUCs) of clinical parameters plus one of each strain (LA pump strain: AUC: 0.86±0.04 and LA reservoir strain: AUC: 0.76±0.05) models were significantly better than plus LA volume index (AUC: 0.68±0.04, compared p-values <0.05).

Conclusions: LA strain was significantly associated with new development of AF. Patients with impaired LA function at admission should be carefully monitored to find AF.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jjcc.2021.05.005DOI Listing
June 2021

Acute Hospital Mortality of Venous Thromboembolism in Patients With Cancer From Registry Data.

J Am Heart Assoc 2021 Jun 22;10(11):e019373. Epub 2021 May 22.

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine Tokushima University Hospital Tokushima Japan.

Background The prognosis of patients with cancer-venous thromboembolism (VTE) is not well known because of a lack of registry data. Moreover, there is also no knowledge on how specific types are related to prognosis. We sought to evaluate the clinical characteristics and outcomes of patients with cancer-associated VTE, compared with a matched cohort without cancer using real-world registry data of VTE. Methods and Results This study was based on the Diagnosis Procedure Combination database in the JROAD-DPC (Japanese Registry of All Cardiac and Vascular Diseases and the Diagnosis Procedure Combination). Of 5 106 151 total patients included in JROAD-DPC, we identified 49 580 patients who were first hospitalized with VTE from April 2012 to March 2017. Propensity score was estimated with a logistic regression model, with cancer as the dependent variable and 18 clinically relevant covariates. After propensity matching, there were 25 148 patients with VTE with or without cancer. On propensity score-matched analysis with 25 148 patients with VTE, patients with cancer had higher total in-hospital mortality within 7 days (1.3% versus 1.1%, odds ratio [OR], 1.66; 95% CI, 1.31-2.11; <0.0001), 14 days (2.5% versus 1.5%, OR, 2.07; 95% CI, 1.72-2.49; <0.0001), and 30 days (4.8% versus 2.0%, OR, 2.85; 95% CI, 2.45-3.31; <0.0001). On analysis for each type of cancer, in-hospital mortality in 11 types of cancer was significantly high, especially pancreas (OR, 12.96; 95% CI, 6.41-26.20), biliary tract (OR, 8.67; 95% CI, 3.00-25.03), and liver (OR, 7.31; 95% CI, 3.05-17.50). Conclusions Patients with cancer had a higher in-hospital acute mortality for VTE than those without cancer, especially in pancreatic, biliary tract, and liver cancers.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/JAHA.120.019373DOI Listing
June 2021

Congenital Hypogonadotropic Hypogonadism with Early-Onset Coronary Artery Disease.

J Med Invest 2021 ;68(1.2):189-191

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Tokushima University Hospital, Tokushima, Japan.

The patient with congenital hypogonadotropic hypogonadism (HH) shows low serum levels of androgen, which is a group of sex hormones including testosterone, caused by the decreased gonadotropin release in the hypothalamus. Recent reports showed androgens exert protective effects against insulin resistance or atherosclerotic diseases, such as diabetes mellitus or coronary artery disease. However, whether the juvenile hypogonadism affects the diabetes or cardiovascular disease is unclear. We report a case of a middle-aged man with congenital HH who had severe coronary artery disease complicated with metabolic disorders. J. Med. Invest. 68 : 189-191, February, 2021.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2152/jmi.68.189DOI Listing
January 2021

Infective Endocarditis from Furuncle with Meningitis Complication Caused by Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus.

Intern Med 2021 Apr 19. Epub 2021 Apr 19.

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Tokushima University Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Japan.

Infective endocarditis (IE) may be acquired in the community as community-acquired (CA) IE or in the healthcare setting. In Japan, cases of CA-methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infection as skin infection have been increasing. CA-MRSA strains, including the USA300 clone, have higher pathogenicity and are more destructive to tissue than healthcare-associated MRSA strains because of the toxins they produce, including arginine-catabolic mobile element (ACME) and Panton-Valentine leukocidin (PVL). However, only a few IE cases induced by USA300 have been reported. We herein report a 64-year-old man who developed CA-IE from a furuncle caused by USA300 MRSA producing PVL and ACME, which resulted in complications of meningitis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2169/internalmedicine.6902-20DOI Listing
April 2021

Left Atrial Strain Associated with Functional Recovery in Patients Receiving Optimal Treatment for Heart Failure.

J Am Soc Echocardiogr 2021 Apr 20. Epub 2021 Apr 20.

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Tokushima University Hospital, Tokushima, Japan.

Background: Heart failure with recovered ejection fraction (HFrecEF) has been reported in several previous studies to have a better prognosis than heart failure with reduced ejection fraction (HFrEF). However, the factors associated with HFrecEF have not been identified. The aim of this study was to test the hypothesis that left atrial (LA) strain could help identify patients with recovered ejection fraction (EF) among those with heart failure (HF) with low EF on admission.

Methods: One hundred consecutive patients hospitalized for the first time for new-onset HF were enrolled. Patients were clinically diagnosed with HFrEF on admission (left ventricular EF < 40%) and received optimal treatment for HF. Twenty-eight patients improved to HFrecEF during 6 months of follow-up.

Results: Regarding clinical background, there were significantly more women and a lower rate of atrial fibrillation in the HFrecEF group than in the HFrEF group. In a multivariate logistic regression analysis, LA strain was an independent predictor of HFrecEF, even after adjustment for gender and left ventricular EF (odds ratio: 4.06; 95% CI: 2.04-8.07; P < .001). A cutoff value of 10.8% for LA strain showed high sensitivity (96%) and specificity (82%) in identifying HFrecEF in patients with HF presenting with low EF on admission. During a follow-up period of 24 ± 13 months, 31 patients (31%) had cardiovascular death or readmission for HF. Patients with reduced LA strain (<10.8%) had significantly shorter event-free survival than those with preserved LA strain (P = .02).

Conclusions: LA strain is a useful indicator for predicting HFrecEF and should be considered as a routine measurement in patients with HFrEF on admission.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.echo.2021.03.016DOI Listing
April 2021

Activated Factor X Signaling Pathway via Protease-Activated Receptor 2 Is a Novel Therapeutic Target for Preventing Atrial Fibrillation.

Circ J 2021 Jul 20;85(8):1383-1391. Epub 2021 Mar 20.

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Tokushima University Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences.

Background: Activated factor X (FXa), which contributes to chronic inflammation via protease-activated receptor 2 (PAR2), might play an important role in atrial fibrillation (AF) arrhythmogenesis. This study aimed to assess whether PAR2 signaling contributes to AF arrhythmogenesis and whether rivaroxaban ameliorates atrial inflammation and prevents AF.Methods and Results:In Study 1, PAR2 deficient (PAR2-/-) and wild-type mice were infused with angiotensin II (Ang II) or a vehicle via an osmotic minipump for 2 weeks. In Study 2, spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHRs) were treated with rivaroxaban, warfarin, or vehicle for 2 weeks after 8 h of right atrial rapid pacing. The AF inducibility and atrial remodeling in both studies were examined. Ang II-treated PAR2-/- mice had a lower incidence of AF and less mRNA expression of collagen1 and collagen3 in the atrium compared to wild-type mice treated with Ang II. Rivaroxaban significantly reduced AF inducibility compared with warfarin or vehicle. In SHRs treated with a vehicle, rapid atrial pacing promoted gene expression of inflammatory and fibrosis-related biomarkers in the atrium. Rivaroxaban, but not warfarin, significantly reduced expression levels of these genes.

Conclusions: The FXa-PAR2 signaling pathway might contribute to AF arrhythmogenesis associated with atrial inflammation. A direct FXa inhibitor, rivaroxaban, could prevent atrial inflammation and reduce AF inducibility, probably by inhibiting the pro-inflammatory activation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1253/circj.CJ-20-1006DOI Listing
July 2021

Antegrade slow pathway mapping of typical atrioventricular nodal reentrant tachycardia based on direct slow pathway capture.

J Arrhythm 2021 Feb 24;37(1):128-139. Epub 2020 Dec 24.

Department of Cardiology Saitama Medical University International Medical Center Hidaka Japan.

Background: Radiofrequency (RF) ablation of typical atrioventricular nodal reentrant tachycardia (tAVNRT) is performed without revealing out the location of antegrade slow pathway (ASp). In this study, we studied a new electrophysiological method of identifying the site of ASp.

Methods: This study included 19 patients. Repeated series of very high-output single extrastimulations (VhoSESts) were delivered at the anatomical slow pathway region during tAVNRT. Tachycardia cycle length (TCL), coupling interval (CI), and return cycle (RC) were measured and the prematurity of VhoSESts [ΔPM (= TCL - CI)] and the prolongation of RCs [ΔPL (= RC - TCL)] were calculated. Pacing sites were classified into two categories: (i) ASp capture sites [DSPC(+) sites], where two different RCs were shown, and ASp non-capture sites [DSPC(-) sites], where only one RC was shown. RF ablation was performed at DSPC(+) sites and/or sites with catheter-induced mechanical trauma (CIMT) to ASp.

Results: DSPC(+) sites were shown in 13 patients (68%). RF ablation was successful in all patients without any degree of atrioventricular block nor recurrence. Total number of RF applications was 1.8 ± 1.1. Minimal distance between successful ablation sites and DSPC(+)/CIMT sites and His bundle (HB) electrogram recording sites was 1.9 ± 0.8 mm and 19.8 ± 6.1 mm, respectively. ΔPL of more than 92.5 ms, ΔPL/TCL of more than 0.286, and ΔPL/ΔPM of more than 1.565 could identify ASp with sensitivity of 100%, 91.1%, and 88.9% and specificity of 92.9%, 97.0%, and 97.6%, respectively.

Conclusions: Sites with ASp capture and CIMT were close to successful ablation sites and could be useful indicators of tAVNRT ablation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/joa3.12484DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7896471PMC
February 2021

Cardiac reserve by 6-minute walk stress echocardiography in systemic sclerosis.

Open Heart 2021 02;8(1)

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Tokushima University Hospital, Tokushima, Japan.

Objectives: There is a high prevalence of left ventricular diastolic dysfunction (LVDD) in systemic sclerosis (SSc) which is associated with high mortality. Thus, early detection of LVDD could be important in management of SSc. We hypothesised that exercise echocardiography in SSc patients with normal resting haemodynamics may expose early phase LVDD, which could affect its prognosis, defined as cardiovascular death and unplanned hospitalisation for heart failure.

Methods: Between January 2014 and December 2018, we prospectively enrolled 140 patients with SSc who underwent 6-minute walk (6MW) stress echocardiographic studies with normal range of estimated mean pulmonary arterial pressure (mPAP) (<25 mm Hg) and mean pulmonary artery wedge pressure (mPAWP) (<15 mm Hg) at rest. We used ΔmPAP/Δcardiac output (CO) to assess pulmonary vascular reserve and ΔmPAWP/ΔCO to assess LV cardiac reserve between resting and post-6MW.

Results: During a median period of 3.6 years (IQR 2.0-5.1 years), 25 patients (18%) reached the composite outcome. Both ΔmPAP/ΔCO and ΔmPAWP/ΔCO in patients with events were significantly greater than in those without events (8.9±3.8 mm Hg/L/min vs 3.0±1.7 mm Hg/L/min; p=0.002, and 2.2±0.9 mm Hg/L/min vs 0.9±0.5 mm Hg/L/min; p<0.001, respectively). Patients with both impaired LV cardiac reserve (ΔmPAWP/ΔCO>1.4 mm Hg/L/min) and impaired pulmonary vascular reserve (ΔmPAP/ΔCO>3.0 mm Hg/L/min) had worse outcomes compared with those without these abnormalities (p<0.001).

Conclusion: The 6MW stress echocardiography revealed impaired LV cardiac reserve in SSc patients with normal resting haemodynamics. Furthermore, LV cardiac reserve independently associates with clinical worsening in SSc, providing incremental prognostic utility, in addition to pulmonary vascular parameters.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/openhrt-2020-001559DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7898855PMC
February 2021

Association between Vitamin D and Heart Failure Mortality in 10,974 Hospitalized Individuals.

Nutrients 2021 Jan 23;13(2). Epub 2021 Jan 23.

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Tokushima University Hospital, Tokushima 770-8503, Japan.

A broad range of chronic conditions, including heart failure (HF), have been associated with vitamin D deficiency. Existing clinical trials involving vitamin D supplementation in chronic HF patients have been inconclusive. We sought to evaluate the outcomes of patients with vitamin D supplementation, compared with a matched cohort using real-world big data of HF hospitalization. This study was based on the Diagnosis Procedure Combination database in the Japanese Registry of All Cardiac and Vascular Datasets (JROAD-DPC). After exclusion criteria, we identified 93,692 patients who were first hospitalized with HF between April 2012 and March 2017 (mean age was 79 ± 12 years, and 52.2% were male). Propensity score (PS) was estimated with logistic regression model, with vitamin D supplementation as the dependent variable and clinically relevant covariates. On PS-matched analysis with 10,974 patients, patients with vitamin D supplementation had lower total in-hospital mortality (6.5 vs. 9.4%, odds ratio: 0.67, < 0.001) and in-hospital mortality within 7 days and 30 days (0.9 vs. 2.5%, OR, 0.34, and 3.8 vs. 6.5%, OR: 0.56, both < 0.001). In the sub-group analysis, mortalities in patients with age < 75, diabetes, dyslipidemia, atrial arrhythmia, cancer, renin-angiotensin system blocker, and β-blocker were not affected by vitamin D supplementation. Patients with vitamin D supplementation had a lower in-hospital mortality for HF than patients without vitamin D supplementation in the propensity matched cohort. The identification of specific clinical characteristics in patients benefitting from vitamin D may be useful for determining targets of future randomized control trials.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/nu13020335DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7911510PMC
January 2021

Effects of L-/N-Type Calcium Channel Blockers on Angiotensin II-Renin Feedback in Hypertensive Patients.

Int J Hypertens 2020 22;2020:6653851. Epub 2020 Dec 22.

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Tokushima University Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima, Japan.

Objectives: Cilnidipine, an L-/N-type calcium channel blocker (CCB), has unique organ-protective properties due to suppression of hyperactivity in the sympathetic nervous system and renin-angiotensin system (RAS). In this study, we hypothesized that cilnidipine might exert a renoprotective effect by suppressing the RAS.

Methods: A total of 25 hypertensive patients receiving a RAS inhibitor were randomly assigned to a cilnidipine ( = 12) or amlodipine ( = 13) group. The effects of cilnidipine on proteinuria and angiotensin II-renin feedback were assessed.

Results: After 6 months of treatment, both systolic and diastolic blood pressures were significantly reduced to a similar extent in both groups. The urine albumin-to-creatinine ratio was significantly lower in the cilnidipine group ( < 0.05) than in the amlodipine group. Amlodipine increased plasma angiotensin I and angiotensin II levels ( < 0.05), whereas cilnidipine did not. Interestingly, the cilnidipine group had a higher ratio of angiotensin-(1-7) (Ang-(1-7)) to angiotensin II in plasma than the amlodipine group ( < 0.05).

Conclusions: The L-/N-type CCB cilnidipine, but not amlodipine, decreased urinary albumin excretion in hypertensive patients. Cilnidipine also increased the ratio of Ang-(1-7) to angiotensin II in plasma, which might be one factor underlying its beneficial effects.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2020/6653851DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7803135PMC
December 2020

Influence of CYP2C19 genotypes for the effect of 1-month dual antiplatelet therapy followed by clopidogrel monotherapy relative to 12-month dual antiplatelet therapy on clinical outcomes after percutaneous coronary intervention: a genetic substudy from the STOPDAPT-2.

Cardiovasc Interv Ther 2020 Nov 12. Epub 2020 Nov 12.

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Kyoto University Graduate School of Medicine, 54 Shogoin Kawahara-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto, 606-8507, Japan.

The ultra-short dual antiplatelet therapy (DAPT) followed by P2Y inhibitor monotherapy might be promising after percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI). However, CYP2C19 loss-of-function (LOF) alleles have been reported to diminish the effect of clopidogrel, and clopidogrel monotherapy has a concern about the increased ischemic risk for patients with such alleles. STOPDAPT-2 is the multicenter prospective open-label, but adjudicator-blinded randomized control study comparing 1-month DAPT followed by clopidogrel monotherapy with the standard 12-month DAPT after PCI with cobalt-chromium everolimus-eluting stents. Among the participants of STOPDAPT-2, selected patients participated in a substudy of the CYP2C19 gene test. Patients with two CYP2C19*2 or *3 alleles were defined as the poor metabolizer (PM), one allele as the intermediate metabolizer (IM), and no allele as the extensive metabolizer (EM). The primary endpoint was the composite of cardiovascular and bleeding events, as defined in STOPDAPT-2. Among 750 (24.9%) patients with known CYP2C19 genotypes, 129 (17.2%) were PM, 367 (49.0%) were IM, and 254 (33.9%) were EM. The hazard ratios of 1-month DAPT relative to 12-month DAPT for the primary endpoint in PM, IM, and EM strata were 0.66 (95% CI 0.11-3.94), 1.94 (95% CI 0.60-6.31), and 0.21 (95% CI 0.02-1.78), respectively (P interaction = 0.17), and those for cardiovascular composite endpoint were 1.00 (95% CI 0.14-7.10), 6.10 (95% CI 0.75-49.55), and 0.26 (95% CI 0.03-2.34), respectively (P interaction = 0.12). In conclusion, for the selected patients in STOPDAPT-2 trial, CYP2C19 LOF alleles had no significant, consistent interaction with the effect of 1-month DAPT relative to 12-month DAPT for clinical outcomes, although the study was overtly underpowered. TRIAL REGISTRY: STOPDAPT-2 ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT02619760.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12928-020-00719-6DOI Listing
November 2020

Monotherapy With Prasugrel After Dual-Antiplatelet Therapy for Japanese Percutaneous Coronary Intervention Patients With High Bleeding Risk - A Prospective Cohort Study (PENDULUM mono Study).

Circ J 2020 12 7;85(1):27-36. Epub 2020 Nov 7.

Division of Cardiology & Catheterization Laboratories, Shonan Kamakura General Hospital.

Background: The risks of bleeding and cardiovascular events in high bleeding risk (HBR) Japanese patients undergoing percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) while receiving single-antiplatelet therapy (SAPT) remains unknown. We aimed to evaluate the frequency of bleeding and cardiovascular events associated with prasugrel monotherapy after short-term dual-antiplatelet therapy (DAPT) in Japanese HBR patients after PCI.Methods and Results:The PENDULUM mono study was a multicenter, non-interventional, prospective registry (n=1,173). The primary endpoint was the cumulative incidence of clinically relevant bleeding (CRB; Bleeding Academic Research Consortium types 2, 3, and 5) from 1 to 12 months after PCI. Secondary endpoints included major adverse cardiac and cerebrovascular events (MACCE). The proportion of patients who received prasugrel monotherapy at 12 months after PCI was 79.7%, and no cases of stent thrombosis were observed among these patients. The cumulative incidence of CRB was 3.2% from 1 to 12 months after PCI; that of MACCE was 3.8%. Severe anemia, chronic kidney disease, oral anticoagulant use at discharge, and heart failure were significantly associated with CRB.

Conclusions: Among HBR patients undergoing PCI who were not suitable for concomitant aspirin and were scheduled for prasugrel monotherapy, most patients were on prasugrel monotherapy after DAPT. Cumulative incidences of CRB and MACCE after periprocedural period were 3.2% and 3.8%, respectively, and no cases of stent thrombosis were reported. SAPT might be a suitable alternative to DAPT.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1253/circj.CJ-20-0786DOI Listing
December 2020

Association between Sarcopenia/Lower Muscle Mass and Short-Term Regression of Deep Vein Thrombosis Using Direct Oral Anticoagulants.

Int Heart J 2020 Jul 18;61(4):787-794. Epub 2020 Jul 18.

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Tokushima University Hospital.

Advanced age, obesity, and muscle weakness are independent factors in the onset of deep vein thrombosis (DVT). Recently, an association between sarcopenia and DVT has been reported. We hypothesized that sarcopenia related factors, observed by ultrasonography, are associated with the regression effect on the thrombus following anticoagulation therapy. The present study focused on gastrocnemius muscle (GCM) thickness and the GCM's internal echogenic brightness. We examined the association with DVT regression following direct oral anticoagulants (DOACs) treatment.The prospective cohort study period was between October 2017 and August 2018. We enrolled 46 patients diagnosed with DVT by ultrasonography, who were aged >60 years old and treated with DOACs. Sarcopenia was evaluated using the Asian Working Group for Sarcopenia flowchart. The average DOACs treatment period was 94 days, and 29 patients exhibited thrombus regression. On univariate logistic regression analysis, sarcopenia, average GCM diameter index, and gastrocnemius integrated backscatter index were significantly associated with thrombus regression. In a multivariate model, only the average GCM diameter index correlated with thrombus regression.The average GCM diameter index is associated with DVT regression treated with DOACs. Considering the GCM diameter during DVT treatment can be a marker to make a decision for the treatment of DVT.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1536/ihj.20-032DOI Listing
July 2020

Questionnaire in patients with aborted sudden cardiac death due to coronary spasm in Japan.

Heart Vessels 2020 Dec 12;35(12):1640-1649. Epub 2020 Jun 12.

Toyama Prefectural Central Hospital, Toyama, Japan.

Objectives: We investigated the medical or mechanical therapy, and the present knowledge of Japanese cardiologists about aborted sudden cardiac death (ASCD) due to coronary spasm.

Methods: A questionnaire was developed regarding the number of cases of ASCD, implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD), and medical therapy in ASCD patients due to coronary spasm. The questionnaire was sent to the Japanese general institutions at random in 204 cardiology hospitals.

Results: The completed surveys were returned from 34 hospitals, giving a response rate of 16.7%. All SCD during the 5 years was observed in 5726 patients. SCD possibly due to coronary spasm was found in 808 patients (14.0%) and ASCD due to coronary spasm was observed in 169 patients (20.9%). In 169 patients with ASCD due to coronary spasm, one or two coronary vasodilators was administered in two-thirds of patients [113 patients (66.9%)], while more than 3 coronary vasodilators were found in 56 patients (33.1%). ICD was implanted in 117 patients with ASCD due to coronary spasm among these periods including 35 cases with subcutaneous ICD. Majority of cause of ASCD was ventricular fibrillation, whereas pulseless electrical activity was observed in 18 patients and complete atrioventricular block was recognized in 7 patients. Mean coronary vasodilator number in ASCD patients with ICD was significantly lower than that in those without ICD (2.1 ± 0.9 vs. 2.6 ± 1.0, p < 0.001). Although 16 institutions thought that the spasm provocation tests under the medications had some clinical usefulness of suppressing the next fatal arrhythmias, spasm provocation tests under the medication were performed in just 4 institutions.

Conclusions: In the real world, there was no fundamental strategy for patients with ASCD due to coronary spasm. Each institution has each strategy for these patients. Cardiologists should have the same strategy and the same knowledge about ASCD patients due to coronary spasm in the future.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00380-020-01644-7DOI Listing
December 2020

Atherosclerotic Coronary Plaque Is Associated With Adventitial Vasa Vasorum and Local Inflammation in Adjacent Epicardial Adipose Tissue in Fresh Cadavers.

Circ J 2020 04 10;84(5):769-775. Epub 2020 Apr 10.

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Tokushima University Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences.

Background: The coronary adventitia has recently attracted attention as a source of inflammation because it harbors nutrient blood vessels, termed the vasa vasorum (VV). This study assessed the link between local inflammation in adjacent epicardial adipose tissue (EAT) and coronary arterial atherosclerosis in fresh cadavers.Methods and Results:Lesion characteristics in the left anterior descending coronary artery of 10 fresh cadaveric hearts were evaluated using integrated backscatter intravascular ultrasound (IB-IVUS), and the density of the VV and levels of inflammatory molecules from the adjacent EAT were measured for each of the assessed lesions. The lesions were divided into lipid-rich, lipid-moderate, and lipid-poor groups according to percentage lipid volume assessed by IB-IVUS. Higher expression of inflammatory molecules (i.e., vascular endothelial growth factor A [VEGFA] andVEGFB) was observed in adjacent EAT of lipid-rich (n=11) than in lipid-poor (n=11) lesions (7.99±3.37 vs. 0.45±0.85 arbitrary units [AU], respectively, forVEGFA; 0.27±0.15 vs. 0.11±0.07 AU, respectively, forVEGFB; P<0.05). The density of adventitial VV was greater in lipid-rich than lipid-poor lesions (1.50±0.58% vs. 0.88±0.23%; P<0.05).

Conclusions: Lipid-rich coronary plaques are associated with adventitial VV and local inflammation in adjacent EAT in fresh cadavers. This study suggests that local inflammation of EAT is associated with coronary plaque progression via the VV.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1253/circj.CJ-19-0914DOI Listing
April 2020

Osteolytic primary bone lymphoma in the multiple bones.

J Med Invest 2019 ;66(3.4):347-350

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Tokushima University Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima, Japan.

Primary non-Hodgkin bone lymphoma (PBL) can involve solitary or multiple destructive bone lesions such as those of the femur or pelvis humerus, and some cases have osteolytic lesions. PBL is a rare disease in adults. Thus, PBL is rarely considered a differential diagnosis of the osteolytic tumor. In addition, PBL can be underdiagnosed because patients do not experience symptoms or show objective abnormalities in the early stage. Here, we reported an elderly patient with PBL in multiple bones, including the cranial and femoral bones that were fractured due to falling. J. Med. Invest. 66 : 347-350, August, 2019.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2152/jmi.66.347DOI Listing
June 2020

Adult onset of Immunoglobulin A vasculitis - A case report.

J Med Invest 2019 ;66(3.4):344-346

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Tokushima University Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima, Japan.

Immunoglobulin A vasculitis (IgAV), formerly known as Henoch-Schönlein purpura, primarily occurs during childhood between the ages of 3 and 15 years and is the most common form of systemic vasculitis in children ; its occurrence in adults has been rarely reported. Such low incidence could be attributable to either under-diagnosis or misdiagnosis. Thus, not only pediatricians but also physicians should be able to diagnose IgAV accurately to manage the patients appropriately and avoid its associated complications. In addition, treatment of adult onset IgAV with renal involvement has not been fully established yet. We describe here a case of adult onset IgAV complicated by proteinuria and pharyngitis, which was cured by no specific treatment. J. Med. Invest. 66 : 344-346, August, 2019.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2152/jmi.66.344DOI Listing
June 2020

Association of Echocardiography Before Major Elective Non-Cardiac Surgery With Improved Postoperative Outcomes - Possible Implications for Patient Care.

Circ J 2019 11 12;83(12):2512-2519. Epub 2019 Oct 12.

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Tokushima University Hospital.

Background: Whether preoperative echocardiography improves postoperative outcomes is not well established, so we examined the value of echocardiographic assessment on the onset of postoperative heart failure (HF), and determining which patients benefitted most from undergoing echocardiography prior to major elective non-cardiac surgery.Methods and Results:We identified all patients aged 50 years and older who had major elective non-cardiac surgery, and excluded patients with previously identified severe cardiovascular disease. The primary endpoint was the onset of HF during hospitalization. A total of 806 patients were included in the analysis. During hospitalization, 49 patients (6%) reached the primary endpoint. Within the matched cohort, preoperative echocardiography was associated with a statistically significant decrease in postoperative HF (hazard ratio: 0.46, P=0.01). In subgroup analyses, age, sex, body surface area, hypertension, diabetes mellitus, prior HF, surgical type, chronic kidney disease, pulmonary disease, and malignancy influenced the association of echocardiography with postoperative HF.

Conclusions: The use of echocardiography in elderly patients with certain risk factors was associated with improved postoperative outcomes. The basis for this finding remains to be determined; particularly whether echocardiography is simply a marker of a population with better outcomes or whether it leads to better management that improves outcomes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1253/circj.CJ-19-0663DOI Listing
November 2019

Deterioration of biventricular strain is an early marker of cardiac involvement in confirmed sarcoidosis.

Eur Heart J Cardiovasc Imaging 2020 07;21(7):796-804

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Tokushima University Hospital, 2-50-1 Kuramoto, 770-8503 Tokushima, Japan.

Aims: Risk assessment of developing cardiac involvement in systemic sarcoidosis can be challenging because of limited data. Recently, attention has been given to left ventricular and right ventricular (LV and RV) involvement in cardiac sarcoidosis (CS) and its prevalence, relevance, and prognostic value. The aim of this study was to assess the role of biventricular strain to predict prognosis in confirmed sarcoidosis patients.

Methods And Results: LV and RV longitudinal strains (LSs) were evaluated by 2D speckle tracking in 139 consecutive confirmed sarcoidosis patients without other pre-existing structural heart diseases, and 52 age- and gender-matched control subjects. The primary endpoint was CS-related events (cardiac death or development of cardiac involvement). Sarcoidosis without cardiac involvement had significantly lower LV and RV free wall LS compared with control subjects. Basal LS had a higher area under the curve for differentiation of sarcoidosis in patients without cardiac involvement compared to control (cut-off value: -18% with 89% sensitivity and 69% specificity). During a median period of 50 months, the occurrence of CS-related events was observed in 20 patients. In a multivariate analysis, basal LV LS and RV free wall LS were associated with the events [hazard ratio (HR) 0.72, P < 0.001 and HR: 0.83, P = 0.006, respectively]. Patients with impaired biventricular function had significantly shorter event-free survival than those with preserved biventricular function (P < 0.001).

Conclusion: Deterioration of biventricular strain was associated with CS-related events. This information might be useful for clinical evaluation and follow-up in sarcoidosis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ehjci/jez235DOI Listing
July 2020

Association Between Right Ventricular Contractile Function and Cardiac Events in Isolated Postcapillary and Combined Pre- and Postcapillary Pulmonary Hypertension.

J Card Fail 2020 Jan 2;26(1):43-51. Epub 2019 Sep 2.

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Tokushima University Hospital, Tokushima, Japan.

Background: Recent studies have shown that patients with combined pre- and postcapillary pulmonary hypertension (CpcPH) had worse outcomes than those with isolated postcapillary pulmonary hypertension (IpcPH). However, the prognostic factors including right ventricular (RV) function have not been well documented. The aim of this study was to assess the differentiation of PH phenotypes, using echocardiography, and the association between RV longitudinal strain and cardiac events.

Methods And Results: We prospectively recruited consecutive patients who had undergone right heart catheterization. The primary endpoint was cardiovascular death or readmission due to heart failure. We included 137 patients with Group 2 PH. A RV longitudinal strain of 17% was sensitive (85%) and specific (70%) to determine the CpcPH. During a median period of 31 months, 43 patients experienced the primary endpoint during follow-up. In a multivariate analysis, RV longitudinal strain was associated with the primary endpoint in both CpcPH and IpcPH (HR: 0.84, P = 0.003; HR: 0.86, P = 0.001).

Conclusions: Lower RV longitudinal strain was independently associated with worse outcomes in CpcPH and IpcPH. RV longitudinal strain may play a prognostic role in PH phenotypes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cardfail.2019.08.021DOI Listing
January 2020

Updated Left Ventricular Diastolic Function Recommendations and Cardiovascular Events in Patients with Heart Failure Hospitalization.

J Am Soc Echocardiogr 2019 10 1;32(10):1286-1297.e2. Epub 2019 Aug 1.

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Tokushima University Hospital, Tokushima, Japan.

Background: Evaluation of diastolic dysfunction is crucial in determining elevated left atrial pressure. However, a validation of the long-term prognostic value of the newly proposed algorithm updated in 2016 has not been performed. The aim of the present study was to investigate the relative value of the updated 2016 diastolic dysfunction grading system for the incidence of readmission in patients with heart failure (HF) with reduced ejection fraction (HFrEF) and HF with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF).

Methods: Two hundred thirty-two patients hospitalized with HF were retrospectively evaluated. Subjects were divided into two subgroups: those with HFrEF (n = 127) and those with HFpEF (n = 105). Readmission risk scores were calculated using the Yale Center for Outcomes Research and Evaluation HF, LACE index, and HOSPITAL scores. The primary end point was readmission following HF and cardiac death.

Results: Over a period of 24 months, 86 patients were either readmitted or died. Multivariate Cox analysis was performed on both the HFrEF and HFpEF groups. In the HFrEF group, both the 2009 and 2016 algorithms had superior incremental value for the association of the primary end point to several readmission risk scores. In the HFpEF group, only the 2016 algorithm led to significant improvement in association with the primary end point. The 2016 algorithm had incremental value over several readmission risk scores alone.

Conclusions: The recommendations of the 2016 algorithm can be useful for readmission and cardiac mortality risk assessment in patients with HFrEF and HFpEF. The use of echocardiography to estimate elevated left atrial pressure appears to identify a higher risk group and may allow a more tailored approach to therapy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.echo.2019.06.006DOI Listing
October 2019

Lambda-like J wave due to acute myocardial infarction of the diagonal branch.

J Med Invest 2019 ;66(1.2):185-187

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Tokushima University Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima, Japan.

The culprit lesion of acute myocardial infarction could be predicted by electrocardiogram findings. However, we experienced some cases with coronary angiographic finding in the area of ST-T elevation that was different from that predicted. The lambda-like J wave could be caused by ischemia although the mechanism has not been fully elucidated. We report a case of acute myocardial infarction that showed discrepancy between ST-T elevation with lambda-like ischemic J wave in a broad area and coronary angiographical finding of diagonal branch occlusion. J. Med. Invest. 66 : 185-187, February, 2019.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2152/jmi.66.185DOI Listing
December 2019

Right Ventricular Function and Beneficial Effects of Cardiac Rehabilitation in Patients With Systolic Chronic Heart Failure.

Can J Cardiol 2018 10 7;34(10):1307-1315. Epub 2018 Jun 7.

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Tokushima University Hospital, Tokushima, Japan.

Background: It has been recognized that a comprehensive cardiac rehabilitation (CR) program improves mortality in patients with chronic heart failure. On the other hand, the magnitude of the improvement in exercise capacity after CR differs among individuals. The aim of this study was to assess the echocardiographic determinants of responders to CR using preload stress echocardiography.

Methods: We prospectively enrolled 58 chronic heart failure patients with reduced left ventricular ejection fraction (aged 62 ± 11 years; 69% male; left ventricular ejection fraction 43% ± 7%) who had received optimized medical treatment in a CR program for 5 months. We performed preload echocardiographic studies using leg positive pressure (LPP) to assess the echocardiographic parameters during preload augmentation. We defined 41 patients as a development cohort to assess the predictive value of echocardiographic variables. Next, we validated results in the remaining 17 patients as a validation cohort.

Results: In the development cohort, significant improvement in peak oxygen uptake (VO) (>10%) after CR was observed in 58% patients. In a multivariable logistic regression model, the significant predictor of improvement in exercise capacity was right ventricular (RV) strain during LPP (odds ratio: 3.96 per 1 standard deviation; P = 0.01). An RV strain value of -16% during LPP had a good sensitivity of 0.79 and a specificity of 0.71 to identify patients with improvement in peak VO. In the validation cohort, an optimal cutoff value of RV strain value was the same (area under the curve: 0.77, sensitivity: 0.78, specificity: 0.65).

Conclusions: RV strain during LPP may be an echocardiographic parameter for assessing beneficial effects of CR.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cjca.2018.06.003DOI Listing
October 2018

Association of Decreased Docosahexaenoic Acid Level After Statin Therapy and Low Eicosapentaenoic Acid Level with In-Stent Restenosis in Patients with Acute Coronary Syndrome.

J Atheroscler Thromb 2019 Mar 21;26(3):272-281. Epub 2018 Aug 21.

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Tokushima University Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences.

Aim: It is speculated that statin therapy modulates the synthesis of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA), including eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). However, the data available on the effects of statin therapy on the serum levels of PUFA and the subsequent impact on in-stent restenosis (ISR) in patients with acute coronary syndrome (ACS) are limited.

Methods: A total of 120 ACS patients who received emergent coronary stent implantation, follow-up coronary angiography to evaluate ISR, and new statin therapy were enrolled. We measured the serum levels of the PUFA and lipids at the onset of ACS and at the follow-up coronary angiography.

Results: The follow-up coronary angiography revealed 38 ISR cases. New statin therapy significantly reduced the serum levels of DHA and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C), while it did not affect EPA level. Single regression analysis revealed that a decreased serum level of LDL-C was associated with decreased DHA level. The multiple logistic regression analysis revealed that the decreased DHA level after statin therapy and low serum level of EPA on admission were determinants of prevalence of ISR.

Conclusion: Statin therapy decreased the serum level of DHA with a parallel reduction in LDL-C level in patients with ACS. Decreased DHA level after statin therapy and low EPA level on admission are risk factors for ISR, indicating that in patients with ACS, decreased serum levels of DHA may be a residual target for the prevention of ISR.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.5551/jat.44735DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6402885PMC
March 2019

A clinical application of preload stress echocardiography for predicting future hemodynamic worsening in patients with early-stage heart failure.

Echocardiography 2018 10 13;35(10):1587-1595. Epub 2018 Jul 13.

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Tokushima University Hospital, Tokushima, Japan.

Aim: To improve the prognosis of patients with heart failure, risk stratification in their early stage is important. We assessed whether the change in transmitral flow (TMF) velocity pattern during preload augmentation can predict future hemodynamic worsening in early-stage heart failure patients with impaired relaxation TMF pattern.

Methods: We designed a prospective cohort study that included 155 consecutive patients with impaired relaxation (IR) pattern at rest. Preload stress echocardiography was achieved using leg-positive pressure (LPP), and changes in TMF pattern during the LPP was observed during baseline echocardiographic examination. The patients whose TMF pattern developed to pseudonormal (PN) pattern throughout the study period were classified into the change to PN group, and patients whose TMF pattern stayed in IR pattern were classified into the stay in IR group.

Results: The median follow-up period was 17 months. The average age was 68 ± 11 years old, and 97 patients (63%) were male. Among 155 patients, 27 were classified into the change to PN group. A Cox proportional hazard analysis confirmed that the change in the peak atrial systolic TMF velocity during the LPP (ΔA, hazard ratio = 0.58 per 1SD; 95% CI = 0.39-0.88, P = 0.010) was the powerful independent predictor of change into PN pattern. Kaplan-Meier analysis revealed that the patients with ΔA ≤ -7 cm/s had more likely to develop into PN pattern than patients with ΔA > -7 cm/s (P = 0.001).

Conclusions: Evaluation of a response in TMF during the LPP might provide an incremental diagnostic value to detect future overt heart failure in patients with early-stage heart failure.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/echo.14098DOI Listing
October 2018
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