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Prognostic value of thrombolysis, coronary artery patency, signal-averaged electrocardiography, left ventricular ejection fraction, and holter electrocardiographic monitoring for life-threatening ventricular arrhythmias after a first acute myocardial infarction



Prognostic value of thrombolysis, coronary artery patency, signal-averaged electrocardiography, left ventricular ejection fraction, and holter electrocardiographic monitoring for life-threatening ventricular arrhythmias after a first acute myocardial infarction



American Journal of Cardiology 80(7): 852-858



Prognostic studies after acute myocardial infarction (AMI) have mainly been performed in the prethrombolytic era. Despite the fact that modern management of AMI has reduced mortality rates, the occurrence of malignant ventricular arrhythmias in the late phase of AMI remains an important issue. We prospectively studied 244 consecutive patients (97 treated with thrombolytics) who survived a first AMI. All patients underwent time domain signal-averaged electrocardiography (vector magnitude: measurements of total QRS duration, terminal low [<40 microV] amplitude signal duration, and root-mean-square voltage of the last 40 ms of the QRS complex), Holter electrocardiographic monitoring, and cardiac catheterization. Late life-threatening ventricular arrhythmias were recorded. Eighteen arrhythmic events occurred during a mean follow-up period of 57 +/- 18 months. Three independent factors were associated with a higher risk of arrhythmic events: (1) left ventricular ejection fraction (odds ratio 1.9/0.10 decrease), (2) terminal low-amplitude signal duration (odds ratio 1.5/5 ms increase), and (3) absence of thrombolytic therapy (odds ratio 3.9). Low-amplitude signal duration sensitivity for sudden cardiac death was low (30%). Left ventricular ejection fraction had the highest positive predictive value for sudden cardiac death (10%). Thus, thrombolysis decreases both the incidence of ventricular tachycardia and sudden cardiac death with a higher reopening rate of the infarct-related vessel. Signal averaging predicts the occurrence of ventricular tachycardia and an impaired left ventricular ejection fraction predicts the occurrence of sudden cardiac death.

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Accession: 009255224

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 9381997

DOI: 10.1016/s0002-9149(97)00535-3


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