Shear wave elastography (SWE) is emerging as a valuable clinical tool for a variety of conditions. The aim of this pilot study was to assess the potential of SWE imaging of the common carotid arteries (CCA) in patients with spontaneous coronary artery dissection (SCAD), a rare but potentially life-threatening condition, hypothesized to be linked to changes in vessel wall elasticity.
Ultrasound shear wave elastography (SWE) estimates of artery wall elasticity were obtained from the left and right CCAs of 89 confirmed SCAD patients and 38 non-dissection controls. SWE images obtained over multiple cardiac cycles were analysed by a blinded observer to estimate elasticity in the form of a Young’s Modulus (YM) value, across regions of interest (ROI) located within the anterior and posterior CCA walls.
YM estimates ranged from 17 to 133 kPa in SCAD patients compared to 34 to 87 kPa in non-dissection controls. The mean YM of 55 [standard deviation (SD): 21] kPa in SCAD patients was not significantly different to the mean of 57 [SD: 12] kPa in controls, p = 0.32. The difference between groups was 2 kPa [95% Confidence Interval − 11, 4].
SWE imaging of CCAs in SCAD patients is feasible although the clinical benefit is limited by relatively high variability of YM values which may have contributed to our finding of no significant difference between SCAD patients and non-dissection controls.
<b><i>Background:</i></b> Cervical artery dissection (CeAD) is a leading cause of stroke in young adults. Incidence estimates may be limited by under- or overdiagnosis. <b><i>Objective:</i></b> We aimed to investigate if CeAD diagnosis would be higher in urban centers compared to rural regions of New York State (NYS). <b><i>Methods:</i></b> For this ecological study, administrative codes were used to identify CeAD discharges in the NYS Statewide Planning and Research Cooperative System (SPARCS) from 2009 to 2014. Rural Urban Commuting Area (RUCA) codes were taken from the US Department of Agriculture and included the classifications metropolitan, micropolitan, small town, and rural. Negative binomial models were used to calculate effect estimates and 95% confidence limits (e<sup>β</sup>; 95% CL) for the association between RUCA classification and the number of dissections per ZIP code. Models were further adjusted by population. <b><i>Results:</i></b> Population information was obtained from the US Census Bureau on 1,797 NYS ZIP codes (70.7% of NYS ZIP codes), 826 of which had at least 1 CeAD-related discharge from 2009 to 2014. Nonrural ZIP codes were more likely to report more CeAD cases relative to rural areas even after adjusting for population (metropolitan effect = e<sup>β</sup> 5.00; 95% CI: 3.75–6.66; micropolitan effect 3.02; 95% CI: 2.16–4.23; small town effect 2.34; 95% CI: 1.58–3.47). <b><i>Conclusions:</i></b> CeAD diagnosis correlates with population density as defined by rural-urban status. Our results could be due to underdiagnosis in rural areas or overdiagnosis with increasing urbanicity.
AbstractShort- to mid-term functional outcome in spontaneous cervical artery dissection is favorable, but the concomitant psychosocial impact is underreported. We aimed to determine these possible sequelae, with a special focus on sex differences, in our cohort of spontaneous cervical artery dissection subjects. During a standardized prospective in-house follow-up visit we, among other values, evaluated functional outcome (modified Rankin Scale [mRS]), psychosocial measures (return to work-, divorce rate) and health-related quality of life (WHO-QoL-BREF and SF-36-questionnaires). 145 patients participated in the long-term prospective follow-up. Median follow-up time was 6.5 years and excellent functional outcome (mRS ≤ 1) was achieved in 89.0% subjects. 87.6% returned to work and 17.6% married patients had a divorce during follow-up. Even though relevant baseline-/discharge characteristics and functional outcome did not differ between the sexes, women were less likely to return to work compared to men (79.7% vs. 93.8%; P = 0.010) and divorce rate was considerably higher in women (30.2% vs. 9.2%; P = 0.022). Health related quality of life did not differ significantly between the sexes, but women consistently reported lower values. Even though functional outcome is beneficial in most patients, measures to prevent poor psychosocial outcome should be considered in the long-term care of patients with spontaneous cervical artery dissection, especially women.
Introduction: Mitral valve prolapse and aortic root dilatation are reported in association with hypermobile Ehlers–Danlos syndrome (hEDS), but the full phenotypic spectrum of cardiovascular complications in this condition has not been studied in the aftermath of updated nosology and diagnostic criteria. Methods: We performed a retrospective review of 258 patients (> 94% adults) referred to a multidisciplinary clinic for evaluation of joint hypermobility between January 2017 and December 2020 and diagnosed with hEDS or a hypermobility spectrum disorder (HSD) to determine the incidence and spectrum of cardiovascular involvement. Results: Mitral valve prolapse was present in 7.5% and thoracic aortic dilatation in 15.2%. Aortic dilatation was more frequent in individuals with hEDS (20.7%) than with HSD (7.7%) and similarly prevalent between males and females, although was mild in > 90% of females and moderate-to-severe in 50% of males. Five individuals (1.9%) with hEDS/HSD had extra-aortic arterial involvement, including cervical artery dissection (CeAD, n = 2), spontaneous coronary artery dissection (SCAD, n = 2), and SCAD plus celiac artery pseudoaneurysm ( n = 1). This is the first series to report the prevalence of CeAD and SCAD in hEDS/HSD. Conclusions: Cardiovascular manifestations in adults with hEDS/HSD, especially females, are typically mild and readily assessed by echocardiography. Since the risk of progression has not yet been defined, adults with hEDS/HSD who are found to have aortic dilatation at baseline should continue ongoing surveillance to monitor for progressive dilatation. Cardiovascular medicine specialists, neurologists, and neurosurgeons should consider hEDS/HSD on the differential for patients with CeAD or SCAD who also have joint hypermobility.
Patients both male and female with diagnosis of Acute Coronary Syndrome (ACS) present with chest pain as presenting complaint. Lichtman JH et al. in his study with ACS showed that 93% of women presented with chest pain or discomfort.1 As compared to men women experience more associated symptoms as primary complaint. The associated symptoms are fatigue, dyspnea, backache, flue like symptoms, indigestion, palpitations and most common is anxiety & feeling scarry.2 Keeping these scenarios in mind one should inquire this associated presentation along with chest pain or discomfort in evaluating ACS in women.
In continuation with symptoms there is quite a debate on pathophysiology of Acute Myocardial infraction in men and women regarding coronary pathologic features.3 Type 1 plaque rupture most common in both genders with plaque erosion most common in women in non-obstructive coronary artery disease.4 Spontaneous coronary artery dissection (SCAD) having high mortality exists in the absence of risk factor of ACS.5
It was found in women up to 35% of patients with mean age of 42 to 53 years with a MACE (Major acute coronary event) of 47.4% and 10 years mortality rate of 7.7%2 SCAD seen in peripartum cases, oral contraception use, lack of exercise, connective tissue disorders and vasculidites. It is important for the physician to have in mind these disorders to avoid complications of coronary interventions.
In a scientific statement from AHA, Mehte LS et al. showed a lower prevalence of atheroscrotic CAD in women.3 These are certain scoring system,6 that under present women because of vague symptoms and presentation. These scoring systems lead to decrease hospital admission and less noninvasive cardiac testing. For risk satisfaction of chest pain female gender should not be taken as sole criteria for presence or absence of coronary events in presence of other multiple factors.
The last but not the least is the psychosocial stress more in women than in men. It has been found that young women who present with early onset myocardial infarction have more psychosocial risk factors in comparison to men of similar age,3 probably having high rates of poverty and trauma exposure during childhood because of various reasons.7 Different studies are endorsing relationship between depression and ischemic heart disease as prognostic factor after ACS.7 In our population where there is lack of education, poverty, awareness of disease especially in women the physician should ponder on different factors mentioned above i.e. presentation perceptions, prevalence, pathophysiology and psychosocial stress for evaluation and management of chest pain.
Lichtman JH, Leifheit-Limson EC, Watanabe E, Allen NB, Garavalia B, Garavalia LS, et al. Symptom recognition and healthcare experiences of young women with acute myocardial infarction. Circ Cardiovasc Qual Outcomes. 2015;8:S31-8.
Vargas K, Messman A, Levy PD. Nuances in Evaluation of Chest Pain in women. JACC Case Rep. 2021;3(17):1793-7.
Mehta LS, Beckie TM, DeVon HA, Grines CL, Krumholz HM, Johnson MN, et al. Acute myocardial infarction in women: a scientific statement from the American Heart Association. Circulation. 2016;133:916-47.
Mukherjee D. Myocardial infarction with nonobstructive coronary arteries: a call for individualized treatment. J Am Heart 2019;8(14):e013361.
Hayes SN, Kim ESH, Saw J, Adlam D, Arslanian-Engoren C, Economy KE, et al. Spontaneous coronary artery dissection: current state of the science: a scientific statement from the American Heart Association. Circulation. 2018;137:e523-e557.
Preciado SM, Sharp AL, Sun BC, Baecker A, Wu YL, Lee MS, et al. Evaluating sex disparities in the emergency department management of patients with suspected acute coronary syndrome. Ann Emerg 2021;77(4):416-24.
Lichtman JH, Froelicher ES, Blumenthal JA, Carney RM, Doering LV, Frasure-Smith N, et al. Depression as a risk factor for poor prognosis among patients with acute coronary syndrome: systematic review and recommendations: a scientific statement from the American Heart Association. Circulation. 2014;129:1350-69.
Cardiovascular diseases are the main cause of death worldwide, with coronary artery disease being the predominant underlying etiology. The most prevalent coronary lesions are represented by the atherosclerotic plaques, in more than 85% of cases, but there are several other non-atherosclerotic lesions such as spontaneous coronary artery dissection and/or hematoma and spontaneous recanalization of coronary thrombus, which are less common, approximately 5% of cases, but with similar clinical manifestations as well as complications. There are insufficient data regarding the pathological mechanism, true prevalence and optimal treatment of these kind of coronary lesions. Optical coherence tomography (OCT) is an intracoronary imaging technique, developed in order to overcome the diagnostic limitations of a standard coronary angiography and has an extremely high resolution, similar to that of a usual histological evaluation of a biopsy sample, thus, OCT provides a histological-like information, but in a in vivo environment. The aim of this article is to review the current knowledge regarding non-atherosclerotic coronary lesions, with an emphasis on the importance of OCT for optimal identification, characterization of pathogenic mechanisms and optimal treatment selection.