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      Secondary Prevention of Potentially Life-Threatening Arrhythmia Using Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillators in Patients with Biopsy-Proven Viral Myocarditis and Preserved Ejection Fraction

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          Background: Arrhythmia and sudden cardiac death (SCD) are known complications of acute viral myocarditis, regardless of ejection fraction (EF) at presentation. Whether such complications confer long-term risk is unknown, especially in those who present with preserved left ventricular (LV) function. No guidelines exist to the long-term reduction of arrhythmic death in such patients. Method: In this retrospective study, we analyzed the long-term results of implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) treatment in patients after an acute phase of myocarditis with life-threatening arrhythmia. Results: We identified 51 patients who had ICDs implanted following life-threatening arrhythmia presentation of confirmed acute viral myocarditis, despite preserved LVEF. Overall, 72.5% of patients had a clinical history of chest pain and viral infection with fever. Viral myocarditis was confirmed by cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (all had late enhancement) plus endomyocardial biopsies (most frequent were Epstein-Barr virus 29.4%, adenovirus 17.6%, and Coxsackie 17.6%), and 88.2% were discharged on anti-arrhythmic drugs. Overall, 12 patients (23.5%) required ICD intervention within the first 3 months, a further 7 patients (37.3% overall) between 3 and 12 months, and a further 12 patients (60.8% overall) until 58 months. During the follow-up, 3 of 51 patients (5.9%) died—deaths were due to cardiac events ( n = 1), fatal infection ( n = 1), and car accidents ( n = 1). Of the 31 patients who had ventricular tachycardias after the acute phase of myocarditis, 11 needed radiofrequency ablation due to a high number of events or electrical storm. No baseline variables were identified that would serve as a basis for risk stratification. Conclusion: Malignant arrhythmic events due to viral myocarditis are potential predictors of future SCD in patients not only with a reduced but also with a preserved EF.

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          Most cited references 19

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          Current state of knowledge on aetiology, diagnosis, management, and therapy of myocarditis: a position statement of the European Society of Cardiology Working Group on Myocardial and Pericardial Diseases.

          In this position statement of the ESC Working Group on Myocardial and Pericardial Diseases an expert consensus group reviews the current knowledge on clinical presentation, diagnosis and treatment of myocarditis, and proposes new diagnostic criteria for clinically suspected myocarditis and its distinct biopsy-proven pathogenetic forms. The aims are to bridge the gap between clinical and tissue-based diagnosis, to improve management and provide a common reference point for future registries and multicentre randomised controlled trials of aetiology-driven treatment in inflammatory heart muscle disease.
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            CMR imaging predicts death and other adverse events in suspected cardiac sarcoidosis.

            This study aimed to demonstrate that the presence of late gadolinium enhancement (LGE) is a predictor of death and other adverse events in patients with suspected cardiac sarcoidosis. Cardiac sarcoidosis is the most important cause of patient mortality in systemic sarcoidosis, yielding a 5-year mortality rate between 25% and 66% despite immunosuppressive treatment. Other groups have shown that LGE may hold promise in predicting future adverse events in this patient group. We included 155 consecutive patients with systemic sarcoidosis who underwent cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR) for workup of suspected cardiac sarcoid involvement. The median follow-up time was 2.6 years. Primary endpoints were death, aborted sudden cardiac death, and appropriate implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) discharge. Secondary endpoints were ventricular tachycardia (VT) and nonsustained VT. LGE was present in 39 patients (25.5%). The presence of LGE yields a Cox hazard ratio (HR) of 31.6 for death, aborted sudden cardiac death, or appropriate ICD discharge, and of 33.9 for any event. This is superior to functional or clinical parameters such as left ventricular (LV) ejection fraction (EF), LV end-diastolic volume, or presentation as heart failure, yielding HRs between 0.99 (per % increase LVEF) and 1.004 (presentation as heart failure), and between 0.94 and 1.2 for potentially lethal or other adverse events, respectively. Except for 1 patient dying from pulmonary infection, no patient without LGE died or experienced any event during follow-up, even if the LV was enlarged and the LVEF severely impaired. Among our population of sarcoid patients with nonspecific symptoms, the presence of myocardial scar indicated by LGE was the best independent predictor of potentially lethal events, as well as other adverse events, yielding a Cox HR of 31.6 and of 33.9, respectively. These data support the necessity for future large, longitudinal follow-up studies to definitely establish LGE as an independent predictor of cardiac death in sarcoidosis, as well as to evaluate the incremental prognostic value of additional parameters. Copyright © 2013 American College of Cardiology Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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              Amiodarone or an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator for congestive heart failure.

              Sudden death from cardiac causes remains a leading cause of death among patients with congestive heart failure (CHF). Treatment with amiodarone or an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) has been proposed to improve the prognosis in such patients. We randomly assigned 2521 patients with New York Heart Association (NYHA) class II or III CHF and a left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) of 35 percent or less to conventional therapy for CHF plus placebo (847 patients), conventional therapy plus amiodarone (845 patients), or conventional therapy plus a conservatively programmed, shock-only, single-lead ICD (829 patients). Placebo and amiodarone were administered in a double-blind fashion. The primary end point was death from any cause. The median LVEF in patients was 25 percent; 70 percent were in NYHA class II, and 30 percent were in class III CHF. The cause of CHF was ischemic in 52 percent and nonischemic in 48 percent. The median follow-up was 45.5 months. There were 244 deaths (29 percent) in the placebo group, 240 (28 percent) in the amiodarone group, and 182 (22 percent) in the ICD group. As compared with placebo, amiodarone was associated with a similar risk of death (hazard ratio, 1.06; 97.5 percent confidence interval, 0.86 to 1.30; P=0.53) and ICD therapy was associated with a decreased risk of death of 23 percent (0.77; 97.5 percent confidence interval, 0.62 to 0.96; P=0.007) and an absolute decrease in mortality of 7.2 percentage points after five years in the overall population. Results did not vary according to either ischemic or nonischemic causes of CHF, but they did vary according to the NYHA class. In patients with NYHA class II or III CHF and LVEF of 35 percent or less, amiodarone has no favorable effect on survival, whereas single-lead, shock-only ICD therapy reduces overall mortality by 23 percent. Copyright 2005 Massachusetts Medical Society.

                Author and article information

                S. Karger AG
                March 2021
                05 February 2021
                : 146
                : 2
                : 213-221
                aDepartment of Internal Medicine I – Cardiology, Brandenburg Medical School, Brandenburg an der Havel, Germany
                bDepartment of Internal Medicine I, University Hospital of Würzburg, Würzburg, Germany
                cDepartment of Cardiology, University Hospital, Oldenburg, Germany
                dInstitute for Pharmacology and Preventive Medicine, Cloppenburg, Germany
                eDepartment of Internal Medicine I, Marien Hospital Herne, Ruhr-University of Bochum, Bochum, Germany
                Author notes
                *Benjamin Sasko, Brandenburg Medical School, Brandenburg Medical Faculty – Medizinische Hochschule Brandenburg (MHB), Center for Internal Medicine I – Department for Cardiology, Hochstr. 29, DE –14770 Brandenburg (Germany), ben.m.sasko@gmail.com
                511120 Cardiology 2021;146:213–221
                © 2021 S. Karger AG, Basel

                Copyright: All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be translated into other languages, reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, microcopying, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher. Drug Dosage: The authors and the publisher have exerted every effort to ensure that drug selection and dosage set forth in this text are in accord with current recommendations and practice at the time of publication. However, in view of ongoing research, changes in government regulations, and the constant flow of information relating to drug therapy and drug reactions, the reader is urged to check the package insert for each drug for any changes in indications and dosage and for added warnings and precautions. This is particularly important when the recommended agent is a new and/or infrequently employed drug. Disclaimer: The statements, opinions and data contained in this publication are solely those of the individual authors and contributors and not of the publishers and the editor(s). The appearance of advertisements or/and product references in the publication is not a warranty, endorsement, or approval of the products or services advertised or of their effectiveness, quality or safety. The publisher and the editor(s) disclaim responsibility for any injury to persons or property resulting from any ideas, methods, instructions or products referred to in the content or advertisements.

                Page count
                Figures: 6, Tables: 2, Pages: 9
                Electrophysiology and Arrhythmia: Research Article


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