Publications by authors named "Thorsten Lawrenz"

13 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Safety and efficacy of alcohol septal ablation in adolescents and young adults with hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy.

Clin Res Cardiol 2021 Nov 24. Epub 2021 Nov 24.

Department of Cardiology and Intensive Care Medicine, Klinikum Bielefeld gemGmbH, University Hospital OWL, Teutoburger Straße 50, 33604, Bielefeld, Germany.

Introduction: Data regarding alcohol septal ablation (ASA) in young patients with hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy (HOCM) are scarce. The purpose of our study is to evaluate the safety and efficacy of ASA in patients ≤ 25 years.

Methods And Results: All ASAs between 2002 and 2020 at our institution were assigned to a group of patients 14-25 years of age (group 1) and a reference group > 25 years (group 2). 1,264 procedures were analysed in group 2 (58.6 ± 13.5 years) and 41 procedures in group 1 (20.9 ± 3.3 years). The baseline interventricular septal diameter (IVSD) was higher in group 1 (26.0 ± 6.5 mm vs. 21.3 ± 4.4 mm; p < 0.0001). There was no difference in baseline left ventricular outflow tract gradient (LVOTG) (group 1: 54.4 ± 24.4 mmHg; group 2: 52.4 ± 36.6 mmHg; p = n.s.). A previous cardiac device was more often observed in group 1 (31.7% vs. 9.0%; p < 0.0001). Symptoms were improved after 6 months (group 1: mean NYHA class 2.5 at baseline and 1.3 at FU; p < 0.0001; group 2: mean NYHA class 2.7 at baseline and 1.4 at FU; p <0 .0001). IVSD (group 1: 20.3 ± 8.2 mm; group 2: 16.8 ± 5.7 mm; p < 0.0001 for each group compared to baseline) and LVOTG improved during FU (group 1: 25.5 ± 20.0 mmHg; group 2: 22.1 ± 21.7 mmHg; p < 0.0001 for each group). Intrahospital mortality was 0.0% in patients 14-25 years and 0.9% in the reference group. Persistent AV-block was observed in 12.2% of the group 1 and 15.9% of the group 2 patients (p = n.s.).

Conclusion: ASA is safe and effective in HOCM patients 14-25 years of age in experienced centres.
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November 2021

Acute and chronic effects of endocardial radiofrequency ablation of septal hypertrophy in HOCM.

J Cardiovasc Electrophysiol 2021 10 16;32(10):2617-2624. Epub 2021 Aug 16.

Department of Cardiology and Intensive Care Medicine, University Hospital Campus Klinikum Bielefeld, Bielefeld, Germany.

Introduction: Endocardial radiofrequency ablation of septal hypertrophy (ERASH) is an alternative to alcohol septal ablation (ASA) or surgical myectomy for hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy (HOCM). Several studies have confirmed that septal radiofrequency ablation leads to a significant reduction in the left ventricular outflow tract gradient.

Objectives: We aimed to report the outcomes of 41 patients who underwent ERASH with a focus on severe complications.

Methods: Since 2004, 41 patients with HOCM (age: 58.2 ± 13 years) underwent ERASH at our institution. ERASH was performed, since ASA was ineffective (26 patients) or not possible (15 patients).

Results: The left ventricular outflow tract and the right ventricular septum were ablated in 26 and 15 patients, respectively. ERASH resulted in a significant reduction in acute gradient during the session and the results persisted during the 6-month follow-up (67% gradient reduction at rest and 73% after provocation, p = .0002). Pacemaker dependency after ERASH was 29% and pericardial tamponade occurred in two patients. In four patients, ERASH induced a paradoxical increase in obstruction (PIO), beginning suddenly at 30 min after the procedure and leading to lethal shock in one patient. PIO was not observed after ERASH from the right ventricular aspect.

Conclusion: Morbidity and mortality after ERASH were higher than those after ASA. PIO, a life-threatening complication, was observed in 9% of the patients. Our data indicate that ERASH might be considered in patients who are not candidates for surgical myectomy or ASA.
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October 2021

Alcohol-induced right bundle branch block is associated with a benign outcome in HOCM after alcohol septum ablation (ASA).

Clin Res Cardiol 2021 Mar 26. Epub 2021 Mar 26.

Department of Cardiology and Intensive Care Medicine, Klinikum Bielefeld gemGmbH, Teutoburger Straße 50, 33604, Bielefeld, Germany.

Introduction: Alcohol septum ablation (ASA) is a treatment option for hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy (HOCM). We examined the impact of ASA-induced bundle branch block (BBB) on clinical and hemodynamic features.

Methods And Results: We retrospectively analysed 98 HOCM patients with regard to ASA-induced BBB. Clinical examination was performed at baseline, early after ASA and at chronic follow-up (FU). ASA reduced left ventricular outflow tract gradient (LVOTG) during chronic FU (69.2 ± 41.6 pre vs. 31.8 ± 30.3 mmHg post ASA; p < 0.05) and interventricular septal diameter (21.7 ± 3.4 pre vs. 18.7 ± 5.0 mm post ASA; p < 0.05). ASA-induced early right BBB (RBBB) until discharge was observed in 44.9% and chronic RBBB at FU in 32.7%. Left BBB (LBBB) occurred in 13.3% early after ASA and in only 4.1% at chronic FU. Chronic RBBB was associated with more pronounced exercise-induced LVOTG reduction (102.1 ± 55.2 with vs. 73.6 ± 60.0 mmHg without; p < 0.05). 6-min-walk-test (6-MWT) and NYHA class were not affected by RBBB. LBBB had no influence on LVOTG, 6-MWT and symptoms. More ethanol was injected in patients with early RBBB (1.1 ± 0.4 vs. 0.8 ± 0.3 ml without; p < 0.05), who also showed higher mean CK release (827 ± 341 vs. 583 ± 279 U/l without; p < 0.05). Pacemaker implantation during FU was necessary in 11.5% of patients with early RBBB, 3.1% with chronic RBBB, 7.7% with early LBBB and 0% with chronic LBBB (p = n.s. for BBB vs. no BBB).

Conclusion: ASA-induced RBBB is associated with a higher volume of infused ethanol and higher maximum CK release. RBBB does not adversely affect the clinical outcome or need for pacemaker implantation but was associated with higher exercise-induced LVOTG reduction during chronic FU.
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March 2021

Cannabis-induced recurrent myocardial infarction in a 21-year-old man: a case report.

Eur Heart J Case Rep 2020 Jun 17;4(3):1-5. Epub 2020 Apr 17.

Department of Cardiology and Intensive Care Medicine, Klinikum Bielefeld GmbH, Teutoburger Straße 50, Bielefeld D-33604, Germany.

Background: Acute coronary syndrome (ACS) is rarely caused by coronary artery disease in young patients unless cardiovascular risk factors are present. Although non-atherosclerotic causes of ACS are rare, they need to be considered in young patients.

Case Summary: We report on a 21-year-old patient referred to our institution with ACS. Electrocardiogram showed ST-segment elevation and coronary angiography revealed thrombotic occlusion of the left anterior descending artery. Reperfusion was achieved by thrombus aspiration, glycoprotein IIb/IIIa inhibitors (GPI), and drug-eluting stent (DES). The patient had no cardiovascular risk factors but reported cannabis consumption before symptom onset. Although he was put on dual antiplatelet therapy and strictly advised to avoid consumption, he continued to abuse cannabis and suffered three further ACS events within 18 months: the first 8 months later caused by thrombotic occlusion of a diagonal branch treated by GPI and DES, the second after 17 months due to thrombotic re-occlusion of the diagonal branch, and the third after 18 months by thrombotic occlusion of the circumflex artery, both events treated by GPI alone (all while still using cannabis). Since then, he stopped cannabis consumption and has been symptom-free for 8 months.

Discussion: This case highlights that cannabis-induced ACS must be considered as a cause of myocardial infarction in young adults. In contrast to ACS in the elderly population, this unusual ACS cause requires specific treatment. The risk of ACS relapse may substantial if cannabis abuse is continued. This potential hazard needs to be taken into consideration when legalization of cannabis is discussed.
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June 2020

Early outcomes of alcohol septal ablation for hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy: a European multicenter and multinational study.

Catheter Cardiovasc Interv 2014 Jul 7;84(1):101-7. Epub 2013 Nov 7.

Department of Cardiology, 2nd Medical School, Charles University and University Hospital Motol, Prague, Czech Republic.

Background: This study was designed to evaluate the outcomes of alcohol septal ablation (ASA) under multicenter and multinational conditions.

Methods: Data for 459 patients (age 57 ± 13 years) from nine European centers were prospectively collected and retrospectively analyzed.

Results: ASA led to a significant reduction in outflow gradient (PG) and dyspnea [median of PG from 88 (58-123) mm Hg to 21 (11-41) mm Hg; median of NYHA class from 3 (2-3) to 1 (1-2); P < 0.01]. The incidence of 3-month major adverse events (death, electrical cardioversion for tachyarrhythmias, resuscitation) and mortality was 2.8% and 0.7%, respectively. Permanent pacemakers for post-ASA complete heart block were implanted in 43 patients (9%). Multivariate analysis identified higher amount of alcohol (however, in generally low-dose procedures), higher baseline left ventricular ejection fraction and higher age as independent predictors of PG decrease ≥50%.

Conclusions: The results of the first European multicenter and multinational study demonstrate that real-world early outcomes of ASA patients are better than was reported in observations from the first decade after ASA introduction.
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July 2014

Low incidence of procedure-related major adverse cardiac events after alcohol septal ablation for symptomatic hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy.

Can J Cardiol 2013 Nov 6;29(11):1415-21. Epub 2013 Aug 6.

Department of Cardiology, 2nd Medical School, Charles University and University Hospital Motol, Prague, Czech Republic. Electronic address:

Background: Alcohol septal ablation (ASA) is a catheter-based intervention that has been used as an alternative to surgical myectomy in highly symptomatic patients with hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy (HOCM). However, clinically relevant complications can result, including death and complete heart block (CHB) associated with syncope or resuscitation. This study was designed to evaluate the incidence of major ASA-related adverse cardiac events.

Methods: This international multicentre retrospective study included 421 patients in 8 European centres who were treated using ASA from April 1998 to January 2011. Clinical and echocardiographic follow-up (3-6 months) was completed in 394 patients (94%).

Results: ASA led to a significant reduction in symptoms and outflow gradients, with 0.7% mortality. A total of 70 patients (17%) experienced mostly transient CHB during and after the procedure; in 30% of them, CHB occurred or recurred later than 24 hours after ASA. Ninety-seven percent of CHB occurred up to the fifth day after ASA. Permanent pacemakers for CHB were implanted in 35 patients (8%). Multivariate analysis identified intraprocedural bundle branch block and age as independent predictors of CHB.

Conclusions: The results of the multicentre study demonstrate that ASA appears safe and efficacious, with low early mortality. The most frequent major complication after ASA was CHB (17%), which occurred late or was recurrent in almost one-third of these patients; 8% of patients required permanent pacemaker implantation. Independent predictors of CHB development were intraprocedural bundle branch block and age. Difficulty in predicting CHB should lead to close postprocedural monitoring and hospital stays lasting at least 5 days.
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November 2013

Endocardial radiofrequency ablation for hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy: acute results and 6 months' follow-up in 19 patients.

J Am Coll Cardiol 2011 Feb;57(5):572-6

Department of Cardiology, Klinikum Bielefeld, Germany.

Objectives: The purpose of this study was to examine the efficacy and safety of endocardial radiofrequency ablation of septal hypertrophy (ERASH) for left ventricular outflow tract (LVOT) gradient reduction in hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy (HOCM).

Background: Anatomic variability of the vessels supplying the obstructing septal bulge can limit the efficacy of transcoronary ablation of septal hypertrophy in HOCM. Previous studies showed that inducing a local contraction disorder without reducing septal mass results in effective gradient reduction. We examined an alternative endocardial approach to transcoronary ablation of septal hypertrophy by using ERASH.

Methods: Nineteen patients with HOCM were enrolled; in 9 patients, the left ventricular septum was ablated, and in 10 patients, the right ventricular septum was ablated. Follow-up examinations (echocardiography, 6-min walk test, bicycle ergometry) were performed 3 days and 6 months after ERASH.

Results: After 31.2 ± 10 radiofrequency pulses, a significant and sustained LVOT gradient reduction could be achieved (62% reduction of resting gradients and 60% reduction of provoked gradients, p = 0.0001). The 6-min walking distance increased significantly from 412.9 ± 129 m to 471.2 ± 139 m after 6 months, p = 0.019); and New York Heart Association functional class was improved from 3.0 ± 0.0 to 1.6 ± 0.7 (p = 0.0001). Complete atrioventricular block requiring permanent pacemaker implantation occurred in 4 patients (21%); 1 patient had cardiac tamponade.

Conclusions: ERASH is a new therapeutic option in the treatment of HOCM, allowing significant and sustained reduction of the LVOT gradient as well as symptomatic improvement with acceptable safety by inducing a discrete septal contraction disorder. It may be suitable for patients not amenable to transcoronary ablation of septal hypertrophy or myectomy.
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February 2011

Survival after transcoronary ablation of septal hypertrophy in hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy (TASH): a 10 year experience.

Clin Res Cardiol 2008 Apr 10;97(4):234-43. Epub 2007 Dec 10.

Chefarzt a.D. der Klinik für Kardiologie und Internistische Intensivmedizin, Klinikum Bielefeld-Mitte, Jörg Tömlingerstr.16, 82152 Planegg, Germany.

Background: Catheter-based treatment of patients with hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy (HOCM) by alcohol ablation (transcoronary ablation of septal hypertrophy, TASH) leads to symptomatic and haemodynamic improvement. However, little is known regarding the survival and its evolution since the introduction of the method in 1995. Theoretically, the method may be harmful, because widening of the obstructed left ventricular outflow tract is achieved by a septal infarction and subsequently by a potentially arrhythmogenic scar.

Objective: This study sought to determine the impact of TASH on the survival of all patients with HOCM treated in our institution between 1995 and 2005.

Methods: Survival was assessed from the early beginning in each of 644 consecutive patients to April 2005. Group A comprises a first series of 329 patients who were treated in a dose finding strategy with decreasing amounts of ethanol until December 2001, on average, from 2.9 ml to 0.93 ml/patient. The survival of this group was analysed using Kaplan-Meier estimates, multivariate Cox regression and Log-Rank testing. Group B comprises 315 patients of the following "low alcohol dose era" (mean amount of ethanol 0.8 +/- 0.4 ml, range 0.3-1.5 ml) and their mid-term survival (period to first regular 6-month post-procedural control).

Results: All patients (age 58 +/- 15 years, 99.2% follow up, mean 1.4 years): 33 patients died (5.1% all cause mortality), including perioperative deaths. 14/33 (42%) died from cardiac reasons. Annual total (all cause) mortality was 3.2%, total in-hospital mortality 1.2% in all patients (8 of 644 patients, 6 of them with severe comorbidity) and 0.4% in low risk patients. Annual cardiac mortality after hospital discharge was 0.7% (6 patients, all with sudden death). Group A (age 58 +/- 15 years, 98.8% follow up, mean 2.1 years, maximum 6.2 years): 29 patients died (total annual mortality 4.3%), 10 of them from hypertrophic cardiomyopathy related reasons resulting in a total in-hospital mortality of 1.8% (6 deaths), a cardiac annual mortality of 1.5% (including hospital mortality) and 0.6%/year after hospital discharge. Age was identified as an independent predictor of increased overall mortality (P = 0.002) and lower alcohol dosage and the absence of atrial fibrillation as independent predictors of reduced cardiac mortality (P = 0.005 and P = 0.039, respectively). With focus on the median value of the alcohol quantity (2.0 ml), patients treated with high amounts (>2.0 ml) showed a higher total mortality than patients treated with small amounts (< or =2.0 ml) (P = 0.031) and alcohol turned out to be an independent predictor of survival (P = 0.047). The same holds true for a homogenous subset of 262 patients with respect to cardiac mortality (P = 0.018). Group B (age 57 +/- 14 years, 99.7% follow up, mean 7.3 months): Total in-hospital mortality was 0.6% (2 of 315 patients; P = 0.173, group A/B) and cardiac in-hospital mortality 0% (P = 0.016, group A/B). During follow up two patients died, both of them experienced a sudden death reflecting an annual mortality of 1.0%.

Conclusion: These data represent the largest available database on survival after alcohol septal ablation of HOCM from a single centre with large experience, and its evolution over 10 years with increasing procedural experience including the pronounced reduction of ethanol quantity in a systematic doses finding strategy. The in-hospital mortality has become very low. Cardiac survival during follow up was excellent, however, the well-known risk of sudden death is not completely eliminated. Longer follow-up time would be desirable for definite evaluation of this relatively new therapeutic option in the management of HOCM.
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April 2008

Lethal atrioesophageal fistula after pulmonary vein isolation using high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU).

Heart Rhythm 2008 Jan 24;5(1):145-8. Epub 2007 Aug 24.

Bielefeld Mitte Hospital, Department for Cardiology and Internal Intensive Care Medicine, Bielefeld, Germany.

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January 2008

Implantable cardioverter-defibrillators and prevention of sudden cardiac death in hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.

JAMA 2007 Jul;298(4):405-12

Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy Center of the Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55407, USA.

Context: Recently, the implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) has been promoted for prevention of sudden death in hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). However, the effectiveness and appropriate selection of patients for this therapy is incompletely resolved.

Objective: To study the relationship between clinical risk profile and incidence and efficacy of ICD intervention in HCM.

Design, Setting, And Patients: Multicenter registry study of ICDs implanted between 1986 and 2003 in 506 unrelated patients with HCM. Patients were judged to be at high risk for sudden death; had received ICDs; underwent evaluation at 42 referral and nonreferral institutions in the United States, Europe, and Australia; and had a mean follow-up of 3.7 (SD, 2.8) years. Measured risk factors for sudden death included family history of sudden death, massive left ventricular hypertrophy, nonsustained ventricular tachycardia on Holter monitoring, and unexplained prior syncope.

Main Outcome Measure: Appropriate ICD intervention terminating ventricular tachycardia or fibrillation.

Results: The 506 patients were predominately young (mean age, 42 [SD, 17] years) at implantation, and most (439 [87%]) had no or only mildly limiting symptoms. ICD interventions appropriately terminated ventricular tachycardia/fibrillation in 103 patients (20%). Intervention rates were 10.6% per year for secondary prevention after cardiac arrest (5-year cumulative probability, 39% [SD, 5%]), and 3.6% per year for primary prevention (5-year probability, 17% [SD, 2%]). Time to first appropriate discharge was up to 10 years, with a 27% (SD, 7%) probability 5 years or more after implantation. For primary prevention, 18 of the 51 patients with appropriate ICD interventions (35%) had undergone implantation for only a single risk factor; likelihood of appropriate discharge was similar in patients with 1, 2, or 3 or more risk markers (3.83, 2.65, and 4.82 per 100 person-years, respectively; P = .77). The single sudden death due to an arrhythmia (in the absence of advanced heart failure) resulted from ICD malfunction. ICD complications included inappropriate shocks in 136 patients (27%).

Conclusions: In a high-risk HCM cohort, ICD interventions for life-threatening ventricular tachyarrhythmias were frequent and highly effective in restoring normal rhythm. An important proportion of ICD discharges occurred in primary prevention patients who had undergone implantation for a single risk factor. Therefore, a single marker of high risk for sudden death may be sufficient to justify consideration for prophylactic defibrillator implantation in selected patients with HCM.
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July 2007

Predictors of complete heart block after transcoronary ablation of septal hypertrophy: results of a prospective electrophysiological investigation in 172 patients with hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy.

J Am Coll Cardiol 2007 Jun 4;49(24):2356-63. Epub 2007 Jun 4.

Klinikum Bielefeld-Mitte, Department of Cardiology and Internal Intensive Care, Bielefeld, Germany.

Objectives: This study analyzed changes in intracardiac conduction during transcoronary ablation of septal hypertrophy (TASH) to identify predictors for pacemaker dependency after TASH.

Background: Transcoronary ablation of septal hypertrophy is an accepted therapeutic option in hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy (HOCM). However, atrioventricular conduction disorders, requiring permanent pacemaker implantation, remain a major adverse effect.

Methods: This study measured changes in intracardiac conduction in 172 consecutive patients during TASH by simultaneously recording electrophysiological parameters and correlated these parameters with the occurrence of complete heart block during continuous electrocardiographic monitoring for 8 days.

Results: Intraprocedural complete heart block occurred in 36 patients (20.1%) and was associated with a pre-existing bundle branch block (p = 0.010) or advanced age (p = 0.023). All patients with delayed complete heart block during follow-up (n = 15, 8.7%), occurring 1 to 6 days after TASH, showed lack of retrograde atrioventricular nodal conduction after TASH (p = 0.018). None of the patients with intact retrograde conduction after TASH developed delayed complete heart block. Further risk factors for delayed block were advanced age, intraprocedural complete heart block, and prolonged QRS duration before or after TASH (p < 0.05 for all). Permanent pacemaker implantation was performed in 20 patients.

Conclusions: Measurement of intracardiac conduction during TASH improves the safety of the procedure by enabling identification of patients who are at risk of complete heart block after TASH. The duration of prophylactic temporary pacemaker backup should be prolonged up to day 6 after TASH in patients at increased risk (patients with retrograde atrioventricular block and at least 1 additional risk factor).
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June 2007

[Indication for myocardial biopsy in myocarditis and dilated cardiomyopathy].

Med Klin (Munich) 2005 Sep;100(9):553-61

Klinik für Kardiologie und Internistische Intensivmedizin, Klinikum Bielefeld-Mitte, Teutoburger Strasse 50, 33604 Bielefeld.

This review may serve as a basis for evaluating publications on the topic "myocardial biopsy for myocarditis and dilated cardiomyopathy" in the clinical practice. The literature is particularly analyzed to answer the question, whether an endomyocardial catheter biopsy is indicated in patients with these myocardial disorders in the clinical routine besides its unequivocal scientific value. The judgment of the biopsy samples has been based on the classically histological and for years on the additional immunohistochemical and molecular biological-virological examination. The analysis of the literature data shows that outside scientific studies there is no indication to perform myocardial biopsy, or in other words, this procedure is not suitable for diagnosis, therapy, detection of early stages or prognostic evaluation in the disease spectrum "myocarditis, inflammatory heart disease, dilated cardiomyopathy". Reasons are the subjectivity in the judgment and interpretation of bioptic findings resulting in considerable interobserver variability, a missing standardization in biopsy performance, methods of examination and diagnostic criteria, the bioptic sampling error, missing therapeutic and prognostic consequences and potentially severe complications in performing myocardial biopsies. So far, the specificity of inflammatory changes in patients with dilated cardiomyopathy has not been proven in controlled blinded studies. The bioptic changes could be understood also as an unspecific inflammatory process in front of increasing pathophysiological evidence for myocardial inflammation in any form of heart failure. In addition, regarding the specific etiology of dilated cardiomyopathy, primarily a genetic, noninfectious or autoimmunologic origin plays an increasing role. The favorable clinical course and the very good prognosis of the acute, clinically diagnosed or supposed viral myocarditis should also be taken into account for the evaluation of myocardial biopsy. It should also be considered that the proof of causality between acute myocarditis and dilated cardiomyopathy is still lacking. Regarding the diagnosis "inflammatory cardiomyopathy" and multiple inflammatory subsets among patients with dilated cardiomyopathy or unclear regional contraction disorder, there is no adequate clinical validation of different diagnostic methods, criteria and interpretations so far. It is missleading to replace the well-established clinical diagnosis myocarditis by the bioptic diagnosis "inflammatory cardiomyopathy". However, endomyocardial catheter biopsy is clearly indicated in rare patients with fulminant myocarditis, giant-cell myocarditis and myocardial storage disease. Its probably underestimated role in sarcoid heart disease still needs to be clarified by systematic studies.
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September 2005

Transcoronary ablation of septal hypertrophy does not alter ICD intervention rates in high risk patients with hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy.

Pacing Clin Electrophysiol 2005 Apr;28(4):295-300

Department of Cardiology and Internal Intensive Care, Bielefeld Klinikum, Academic Teaching Hospital of the University of Muenster, Teutoburger Strasse 50, D-33604 Bielefeld, Germany.

Introduction: Transcoronary ablation of septal hypertrophy (TASH) is safe and effectively reduces the intraventricular gradient in patients with hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy (HOCM). To analyze the potential of anti- and proarrhythmic effects of TASH, we studied the discharge rates of implanted cardioverter defibrillators (ICD) in patients with HOCM who are at a high risk for sudden cardiac death.

Methods: ICD and TASH were performed in 15 patients. Indications for ICD-implantation were secondary prevention in nine patients after resuscitation from cardiac arrest with documented ventricular fibrillation (n = 7) or sustained ventricular tachycardia (n = 2) and primary prevention in 6 patients with a family history of sudden deaths, nonsustained ventricular tachycardia, and/or syncope. All the patients had severe symptoms due to HOCM (NYHA functional class = 2.9).

Results: During a mean follow-up time of 41 +/- 22.7 months following the TASH procedure, 4 patients had episodes of appropriate discharges (8% per year). The discharge rate in the secondary prevention group was 10% per year and 5% in the group with primary prophylactic implants. Three patients died during follow-up (one each of pulmonary embolism, stroke, and sudden death).

Conclusion: In conclusion, on the basis of ICD-discharge rates in HOCM-patients at high risk for sudden death, there is no evidence for an unfavorable arrhythmogenic effect of TASH. The efficacy of ICD treatment for the prevention of sudden cardiac death in HOCM could be confirmed, however, mortality is high in this cohort of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy patients.
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April 2005