Cardiomyopathy in Congenital and Acquired Generalized Lipodystrophy: A Clinical Assessment


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Abstract

Lipodystrophy is a rare disorder characterized by loss of adipose tissue and low leptin levels. This condition is characterized by severe dyslipidemia, insulin resistance, diabetes mellitus, and steatohepatitis. Another phenotypic feature that occurs with considerable frequency in generalized lipodystrophy is cardiomyopathy. We report here the cardiac findings in a cohort of patients with generalized congenital and acquired lipodystrophy, and present a literature review of the cardiac findings in patients with generalized lipodystrophy.We studied 44 patients with generalized congenital and acquired lipodystrophy, most of them enrolled in a clinical trial of leptin therapy. Patients underwent electrocardiograms and transthoracic echocardiograms to evaluate their cardiac status. We followed these patients for an extended time period, some of them up to 8 years.Evaluation of our cohort of patients with generalized lipodystrophy shows that cardiomyopathy is a frequent finding in this population. Most of our patients had hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, and only a small number had features of dilated cardiomyopathy. Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy was more frequent in patients with seipin mutation, a finding consistent with the literature. The underlying mechanism for cardiomyopathy in lipodystrophy is not clear. Extreme insulin resistance and the possibility of a "lipotoxic cardiomyopathy" should be entertained as possible explanations.

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