A trial by Dr. Jorrit S. Lemkes, published in JAMA Cardiology, demonstrated that immediate coronary angiography and percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) does not improve the 1-year clinical outcomes of patients after successful resuscitation from non-ST segment elevation cardiac arrest. Also, the survival rate was comparable between patients whose angiography was performed immediately (61.4%) versus those whose angiography was delayed (64.0%).
Given the high prevalence of coronary artery disease among patients with cardiac arrest, coronary angiography and PCI should be considered in these patients with suggested evidence of coronary artery involvement. However, the current data regarding the appropriate timing of this intervention is lacking. The interim results of the Coronary Angiography after Cardiac Arrest (COACT) trial failed to find a significant difference between the 90-days clinical outcomes of patients with delayed coronary angiography versus patients with immediate coronary angiography after non-ST segment elevation cardiac arrest. The 1-year follow-up study investigated the long-term clinical outcomes of immediate coronary angiography in these patients.
COACT study, an open-label, multicenter, randomized trial, compared the short-term clinical outcomes of immediate versus delayed coronary angiography in patients resuscitated from cardiac arrest without ST-segment elevation on the electrocardiogram tracing. Briefly, a total of 552 patients with out-of-hospital arrest and no signs of ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) who successfully resuscitated from cardiac arrest were randomized in a 1:1 ratio to undergo immediate (within 2 hours of randomization) or delayed (after neurological recovery or discharge from intensive care unit) coronary angiography. The 1-year endpoints of the study included survival rate, myocardial infarction, repeated revascularization, hospitalization for heart failure, and implantable cardiac defibrillator (ICD) shock since the index hospitalization.
At 1-year follow-up, 94.6% of the participants (n=522) were available for analysis. The recent analysis of the data indicated no significant differences between the two groups. The survival rate was 61.4% and 64.0% in the immediate and delayed coronary angiography group, respectively (odds ratio (OR)=0.90; 95%Confidence Interval (CI):0.63-1.28). Additionally, the endpoints of the interest were equivalent in the 2 groups. For example, the rate of myocardial infarction was 0.8%in the immediate group and 0.4%in the delayed group (OR=1.96; 95%CI: 0.18-21.8). The study also showed that the post-cardiac arrest mortality usually occurs within the first 90 days after the arrest, and the survival rate after this period is relatively favorable.
The trial has some limitations that need to be taken into account. First, the study is not powered for a 1-year analysis. Second, the findings of this study are not generalizable to patients with shock, severe renal dysfunction, or persistent ST-segment elevation due to their exclusion from the trial.
The results of this trial suggest that in patients with out-of-hospital cardiac arrest with no signs of STEMI, the coronary angiography, if necessary, can be delayed until after neurological recovery.
A recent meta-analysis of clinical trials with more than 100,000 patients has shown that the carotid intima-media thickness (cIMT) progression can be used as a surrogate marker for cardiovascular risk in the clinical trials. The results of this study published in Circulation. According to Dr. Willeit, the assessment of cIMT progression can provide a link for the development and license of new therapies for cardiovascular disease. Continue reading
A recent study by Dr. Knott, published in Circulation, have shown the prognostic value of measuring myocardial blood flow (MBF) using artificial intelligence quantification of cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) perfusion mapping in cardiovascular outcomes. According to this study, both MBF and myocardial perfusion reserve (MPR) were associated with death and major adverse cardiovascular events (MACE) independently of other clinical risk markers. Using this technique, quantitative analysis of myocardial perfusion for clinical use is now available. Continue reading
A recent study by Dr. Lopez-Sendon, published in European Heart Journal, showed that cardiotoxicity in the form of left ventricular dysfunction or myocardial injury affects a large portion of patients receiving high-risk anticancer therapy with only severe form strongly associated with all-cause mortality.
Cardiotoxicity has been known as one of the major side effects of anti-cancer therapy that may present with left ventricular dysfunction and heart failure. Given that the early recognition and treatment of these side effects have been associated with a higher recovery rate, a united diagnostic and management guideline seems necessary.
The CARDIOTOX (CARDIOvascular TOXicity induced by cancer-related therapies) registry has been established to determine the prevalence of cardiotoxicity markers as well as their association with guideline-based heart failure criteria and treatment in patients receiving chemotherapeutic agents. To achieve this purpose, a total of 865 patients receiving anticancer regimens associated with moderate to high cardiotoxicity were selected and followed for a median of 24 months. Clinical data, blood samples, and echocardiographic features were collected before the initiation of anticancer therapy and then at 3 weeks, 3 months, 6 months, 1 year, 1.5 years, and 2 years afterward. Patients with past or current history of heart failure or reduced left ventricular ejection fraction (< 40%) and those with a history of previous cancer therapy including chemotherapy and radiation therapy were excluded from the study. Cardiotoxicity was defined as any new deterioration from the baseline of myocardial/ventricular function during follow-up periods. Cardiotoxicity was also sub-classified into four stages depending on the worst myocardial dysfunction/injury observed in the follow-up period. Myocardial dysfunction/injury stages include the following: normal, normal biomarkers (high-sensitivity troponin T and N-terminal natriuretic pro-peptide), and left ventricular (LV) function; mild, abnormal biomarkers, and/or LV dysfunction (LVD) maintaining an LV ejection fraction (LVEF) ≥ 50%; moderate, LVD with LVEF 40–49%; and severe, LVD with LVEF ≤ 40% or symptomatic heart failure.
The study indicated a high incidence (37.5%) of ventricular dysfunction among the patients, of whom only 3.1% were classified as having severe dysfunction and the majority have been classified as mild (31.6%). All-cause mortality was also observed to be higher among those with severe cardiotoxicity than other groups. According to the author, the relatively low prevalence of severe cardiotoxicity in the study population was due to the exclusion of patients with a previous history of cardiac dysfunction and the improvement in the follow-up of the cancer patients in the context of cardio-oncology service. Severe cardiotoxicity has also been associated with a 10-fold increase in total mortality compared to a less severe form of cardiotoxicity. A classification of cardiotoxicity using current heart failure guidelines is also proposed by the authors for future studies. This study acknowledged the critical role of comprehensive monitoring and follow-up for the development of cardiovascular symptoms and left ventricular dysfunction in patients receiving chemotherapeutic agents with potential cardiotoxicity.
Limitations that are worthy of mentioning include the inclusion of patients with some degree of abnormality in biomarkers and echocardiographic findings at baseline. Secondly, the prevalence of myocardial damage may be underestimated due to a number of missing visits or incomplete data collection during the follow-up period. Future research is warranted to approve the relationship of different stages of cardiotoxicity with clinical outcomes.
In an original investigation by Dr. Alexander R. van Rosendael et al recently published in JAMA Cardiology, it was found that the higher-density calcified plaque, referred to as 1K plaque was associated with a reduced risk for future Acute Coronary Syndromes (ACS). The authors also support the hypothesis of plaque stabilization with coronary calcium with the results of this analysis of Incident Coronary Syndromes Identified by Computed Tomography (ICONIC) study and are considerate of different risk stratifications that can be detected in atherosclerotic plaque beyond its burden. Continue reading
In a recent randomized, three-arm, parallel, blinded study by Dr. Schnorbus, published in European Heart Journal, prasugrel was associated with improved endothelial function, more potent platelet inhibition, and decreased plasma interleukin (IL)-6 levels in patients undergoing stent placement for acute coronary syndrome (ACS) compared to ticagrelor and clopidogrel. These effects were observed in patients who received prasugrel 2 hours before stenting.
Coronary artery stenting has been associated with impaired coronary and peripheral endothelial function as well as an inflammatory response leading to the release of mediators and subsequent platelet aggregation. These phenomena are associated with in-stent restenosis as well as adverse prognostic outcomes after percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI). Platelet inhibitors, such as P2Y12 receptor inhibitors, are administered prior and after coronary interventions to address these adverse effects. However, previous studies have suggested that differences exist among P2Y12 inhibitors in terms of their efficacy.
In a prospective, single-center study, a total of 90 patients with unstable angina or non-ST elevation myocardial infarction (NSTEMI) undergoing coronary stenting were randomized to receive a single dose of clopidogrel (600mg), prasugrel (60mg), or ticagrelor (180mg) followed by chronic therapy with the same drug. Patients with elevated c reactive protein (CRP), infective or inflammatory disorders, personal history of prior coronary interventions, impaired hepatic/renal function, those with heart failure, and those with ST elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) were excluded from the study. The primary endpoint of the study was the change in flow-mediated dilation (FMD) of the conduit artery over a period of 1 day, 1 week, and 1 month after PCI. Secondary endpoints were the effect of study medications on macrovascular and microvascular function, platelet aggregation, and inflammatory stress.
The study showed that antiplatelet therapy immediately before stenting was associated with improved FMD without a significant difference among study medications. On the first follow-up after PCI and later follow-up visits, prasugrel was associated with a stronger platelet reactivity inhibition and improved endothelial function. These effects were limited to those who received prasugrel before catheterization. Prasugrel platelet inhibitory effect was more obvious in NSETMI patients than in those with unstable angina. Prasugrel therapy also led to a more pronounced decrease in IL-6 levels. According to the author, “when administered pre-PCI, prasugrel, but not the other agents, limits stent-induced endothelial dysfunction and inflammation in ACS.” This study is limited by its small size and future studies are needed to further confirm these conclusions.
A study led by Dr. Michinari Hieda published in Circulation showed that left ventricular myocardial stiffness is greater in patients with left ventricular hypertrophy and elevated cardiac biomarkers as compared to healthy controls. This may represent the transitional state from a normal healthy heart to heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF).
An expanded analysis of 231 patients from the GALILEO trial comparing rivaroxaban-aspirin based anti-thrombotic therapy with clopidogrel-aspirin based dual anti-platelet therapy post transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR), has shown that the rivaroxaban based regimen protects from valve leaflet motion abnormalities. The rivaroxaban based strategy led to decreased prosthetic valve leaflet thickening and motion reduction following TAVR performed for severe aortic valve stenosis. Continue reading
A single center study that included 187 patients who presented with angina-like chest pain and nonobstructive coronary arteries on diagnostic angiography, has shown that co-existence of high microvascular resistance index (IMR) and vasospasm is associated with an increased incidence of major adverse cardiovascular events (MACE – defined as cardiac death, nonfatal myocardial infarction, and hospitalizations). Rho-kinase activation thought to underlie mechanisms leading to high IMR in this patient population.
The 187 patients included in the study had a median follow-up of 893 days. Continue reading
Data from CLIMA registry shows that simultaneous presence of four optical coherence tomography (OCT) plaque vulnerability features are associated with a seven-fold increased risk of future major coronary events. The study, led by Prati et al., is recently published in the European Heart Journal.
Murai et al. devised a novel physiology-based method of estimating the amount of myocardium subtended by coronary stenosis, which is feasible and can be performed in the catheterization laboratory with a Doppler sensor-equipped guidewire. The study was published in the recent issue of Circulation: Cardiovascular Interventions.
Anti-inflammatory biologic therapy used for the treatment of moderate to severe psoriasis is associated with reduced coronary inflammation in patients with the skin condition. The recent study by Elnabawi et al., published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) Cardiology, revealed.
A study led by Dr. Julian Wichmann published in JACC: Cardiovascular Imaging showed that black women with a history of pregnancy complications had a higher prevalence of coronary artery disease (CAD) on coronary computed tomographic angiography (CCTA). Additionally, having a history of gestational diabetes mellitus was independently associated with any and obstructive CAD and CCTA.
A study led by Dr. Joo Myung Lee showed that noninvasive hemodynamic assessment can be used to enhance the identification of high-risk plaques that could subsequently cause acute coronary syndrome (ACS). The study published in JACC: Cardiovascular Imaging suggests that noninvasive hemodynamic assessment could be integrated into the current standard of practice to potentially improve identification of a culprit lesion in future ACS.
A new study led by Dr. John Heitner, published in Circulation: Cardiovascular Interventions, suggests that Delayed-enhancement cardiac magnetic resonance (DE-CMR) can be helpful in identifying the infarct-related artery (IRA) in patients with non-ST elevation myocardial infarction (NSTEMI). This could help interventional cardiologists decide on the coronary vessel that would need treatments.
A clinical trial led by Dr. Wijnand J. Stuijfzand published in JACC Cardiovascular Interventions showed that when compared to drug-eluting stents, bioresorbable everolimus-eluting stents (BVS) did not lead to improved myocardial blood flow after sympathetic stimulation.
NEW ORLEANS — Transcatheter repair of functional mitral regurgitation (or secondary MR) with MitraClip improved quality of life and hemodynamics better than optimal medical therapy alone, COAPT trial analyses showed. Indeed, the COAPT QOL study showed that among patients with symptomatic HF and 3+ to 4+ secondary MR receiving maximally-tolerated medical therapy, edge-to-edge TMVr resulted in substantial early and sustained health status improvement compared with medical therapy alone. Continue reading
According to a recent publication in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, in diabetic patients presenting with stable chest pain, a computed tomographic angiography (CTA) strategy resulted in fewer adverse cardiovascular outcomes in comparison with a functional testing strategy. The conclusions drawn from the study implied that CTA may be considered as the initial diagnostic modality in this subgroup. Continue reading
A study published in JACC reported that fractional flow reserve (FFR) computation from coronary computed tomography angiography (CTA) datasets (FFRCT) had higher diagnostic performance as compared with standard coronary CTA, SPECT, and PET for vessel-specific ischemia, provided coronary CTA images were evaluable by FFRCT, whereas PET had a favorable performance in per-patient and intention-to-diagnose analysis. The investigators also stressed that in patients in whom 3-vessel FFRCT could be analyzed, FFRCT held the clinical potential to provide anatomic and hemodynamic significance of coronary lesions. Continue reading
The results of a fascinating study conducted by Dr. Patricia Iozzo and her colleagues at the Institute of Clinical Physiology, in Pisa, Italy showed that neonatal changes in cardiac morphology were explained by late-trimester maternal body mass index; myocardial glucose overexposure seen in minipigs could justify early human findings. Moreover, long-term effects in minipigs consisted of myocardial insulin resistance, enzymatic alterations, and hyperdynamic systolic function, according to the publication in JACC: Cardiovascular Imaging. Continue reading