Transitory Myocardial Ischemia in Patients with Vascular Lower Limb Amputation: Relationship with Long-Term Atherothrombotic Events

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Ingham SJM, Chamlian TR, de Souza JM, Stefanini E, Azevedo R, Mussi A, Carvalho AC: Transitory myocardial ischemia in patients with vascular lower limb amputation: Relationship with long-term atherothrombotic events.Objective:To evaluate the prevalence of asymptomatic transitory myocardial ischemia during scintigraphy among amputees of vascular etiology as well as to ascertain correlation with atherothrombotic events during long-term follow-up.Design:A cohort, mean follow-up of 2.1 yrs study was performed in an outpatient rehabilitation clinic with 58 lower limb vascular amputees who were referred for rehabilitation, asymptomatic for coronary heart disease. Patients were evaluated for myocardial ischemia by dipyridamole scintigraphy, and occurrence of severe cardiovascular events (death, acute myocardial infarction, stroke, and peripheral ischemia with hospitalization) was assessed.Results:Of the 58 patients, 26 (44.8%) had positive dipyridamole myocardial scintigraphy for transitory myocardial ischemia. During follow-up, 12 subjects (20.7%), mainly diabetic patients (83%), registered a serious cardiovascular event, with 9 of 12 events having occurred in those who had tested positive for transitory ischemia on scintigraphy (P < 0.025). There were five deaths (19.2%) in those with a positive scintigraphy and a single death (3.1%) in those with a negative dipyridamole test, although the Kaplan-Meier survival curve and Cox regression were not significant (P = 0.09 and 0.1, respectively).Conclusions:We found that 44.8% of patients with vascular lower limb amputation, asymptomatic for coronary disease, tested positive on myocardial scintigraphy for transitory myocardial ischemia. In a mean follow-up of 2.1 yrs, there was 10.3% of atherothrombotic events/year, with a higher death toll in those patients with positive scintigraphy.

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