Cardiology Research and Practice The latest articles from Hindawi Publishing Corporation © 2016 , Hindawi Publishing Corporation . All rights reserved. Impact of Body Mass Index on Short-Term Outcomes in Patients Undergoing Percutaneous Coronary Intervention in Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada Wed, 07 Sep 2016 11:45:50 +0000 Background and Aim. Obesity (BMI ≥ 30 kg/m2) is associated with advanced cardiovascular disease requiring procedures such as percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI). Studies report better outcomes in obese patients having these procedures but results are conflicting or inconsistent. Newfoundland and Labrador (NL) has the highest rate of obesity in Canada. The aim of the study was to examine the relationship between BMI and vascular and nonvascular complications in patients undergoing PCI in NL. Methods. We studied 6473 patients identified in the APPROACH-NL database who underwent PCI from May 2006 to December 2013. BMI categories included normal, 18.5 ≤ BMI < 25.0 (); overweight, 25.0 ≤ BMI < 30 (); and obese, BMI ≥ 30.0 (). Results. Patients with obesity were younger and had a higher incidence of diabetes, hypertension, and family history of cardiac disease. Obese patients experienced less vascular complications (normal, overweight, and obese: 8.2%, 7.2%, and 5.3%, ). No significant differences were observed for in-lab (4.0%, 3.3%, and 3.1%, ) or postprocedural (1.0%, 0.8%, and 0.9%, ) nonvascular complications. After adjusting for covariates, BMI was not a significant factor associated with adverse outcomes. Conclusion. Overweight and obesity were not independent correlates of short-term vascular and nonvascular complications among patients undergoing PCI. Anne B. Gregory, Kendra K. Lester, Deborah M. Gregory, Laurie K. Twells, William K. Midodzi, and Neil J. Pearce Copyright © 2016 Anne B. Gregory et al. All rights reserved. Association between Stable Coronary Artery Disease and In Vivo Thrombin Generation Thu, 11 Aug 2016 06:40:32 +0000 Background. Thrombin has been implicated as a key molecule in atherosclerotic progression. Clinical evidence shows that thrombin generation is enhanced in atherosclerosis, but its role as a risk factor for coronary atherosclerotic burden has not been proven in coronary artery disease (CAD) stable patients. Objectives. To evaluate the association between TAT levels and homocysteine levels and the presence of coronary artery disease diagnosed by coronary angiography in patients with stable CAD. Methods and Results. We included 95 stable patients admitted to the Haemodynamics Department, including 63 patients with significant CAD and 32 patients without. We measured the thrombin-antithrombin complex (TAT) and homocysteine concentrations in all the patients. The CAD patients exhibited higher concentrations of TAT (40.76 μg/L versus 20.81 μg/L, ) and homocysteine (11.36 μmol/L versus 8.81 μmol/L, ) compared to the patients without significant CAD. Specifically, in patients with CAD+ the level of TAT level was associated with the severity of CAD being 36.17 ± 24.48 μg/L in the patients with bivascular obstruction and 42.77 ± 31.81 μg/L in trivascular coronary obstruction, . Conclusions. The level of in vivo thrombin generation, quantified as TAT complexes, is associated with the presence and severity of CAD assessed by coronary angiography in stable CAD patients. Benjamin Valente-Acosta, Manuel Alfonso Baños-González, Marco Antonio Peña-Duque, Marco Antonio Martínez-Ríos, Leslie Quintanar-Trejo, Gad Aptilon-Duque, Mirthala Flores-García, David Cruz-Robles, Guillermo Cardoso-Saldaña, and Aurora de la Peña-Díaz Copyright © 2016 Benjamin Valente-Acosta et al. All rights reserved. Impact of Rosuvastatin Treatment on HDL-Induced PKC-βII and eNOS Phosphorylation in Endothelial Cells and Its Relation to Flow-Mediated Dilatation in Patients with Chronic Heart Failure Tue, 02 Aug 2016 12:46:11 +0000 Background. Endothelial function is impaired in chronic heart failure (CHF). Statins upregulate endothelial NO synthase (eNOS) and improve endothelial function. Recent studies demonstrated that HDL stimulates NO production due to eNOS phosphorylation at Ser1177, dephosphorylation at Thr495, and diminished phosphorylation of PKC-βII at Ser660. The aim of this study was to elucidate the impact of rosuvastatin on HDL mediated eNOS and PKC-βII phosphorylation and its relation to endothelial function. Methods. 18 CHF patients were randomized to 12 weeks of rosuvastatin or placebo. At baseline, 12 weeks, and 4 weeks after treatment cessation we determined lipid levels and isolated HDL. Human aortic endothelial cells (HAEC) were incubated with isolated HDL and phosphorylation of eNOS and PKC-βII was evaluated. Flow-mediated dilatation (FMD) was measured at the radial artery. Results. Rosuvastatin improved FMD significantly. This effect was blunted after treatment cessation. LDL plasma levels were reduced after rosuvastatin treatment whereas drug withdrawal resulted in significant increase. HDL levels remained unaffected. Incubation of HAEC with HDL had no impact on phosphorylation of eNOS or PKC-βII. Conclusion. HDL mediated eNOS and PKC-βII phosphorylation levels in endothelial cells do not change with rosuvastatin in CHF patients and do not mediate the marked improvement in endothelial function. Ephraim B. Winzer, Pauline Gaida, Robert Höllriegel, Tina Fischer, Axel Linke, Gerhard Schuler, Volker Adams, and Sandra Erbs Copyright © 2016 Ephraim B. Winzer et al. All rights reserved. Cardiac Arrhythmias: Update on Mechanisms and Clinical Managements Sun, 31 Jul 2016 14:10:50 +0000 Yi-Gang Li, David G. Benditt, Thomas Klingenheben, Kai Hu, and Dali Feng Copyright © 2016 Yi-Gang Li et al. All rights reserved. The Concordance between Myocardial Perfusion Imaging and Coronary Angiography in Detecting Coronary Artery Disease: A Retrospective Study in a Tertiary Cardiac Center at King Abdullah Medical City Mon, 27 Jun 2016 14:25:26 +0000 Background. Coronary artery disease (CAD) is considered as the leading cause of the cardiovascular fatalities worldwide. CAD is diagnosed by many modalities of imaging such as myocardial perfusion imaging (MPI) and coronary angiography (CAG). Methods. A retrospective cross-sectional study was conducted that included all patients referred to the KAMC (King Abdullah Medical City) nuclear cardiology lab from its opening until the end of May 2014 (a period of 17 months). A total of 228 patient reports with a history of conducting either CAG or MPI or both were used in this study and statistically analyzed. Results. An analysis of the MPI results revealed that 78.5% of the samples were abnormal. On the other hand, 26.75% of the samples revealed that they were subjected to CAG and MPI. There was a significant and fair agreement between MPI and CAG by using all the agreement coefficients (kappa = 0.237, phi = 0.310, and value = 0.043). The sensitivity, specificity, and accuracy of MPI with reference to CAG were 97.8%, 20%, and 78.69%, respectively. In addition, positive predictive and negative predictive values were 78.95% and 75%, respectively. Conclusion. In a tertiary referral center, there was a significant agreement between MPI and CAG and a high accuracy of MPI. MPI was a noninvasive diagnostic test that could be used as a gatekeeper for CAG. Fatma Aboul-Enein, Majed O. Aljuaid, Hail T. Alharthi, Abdulkarim M. Almudhhi, and Mohammad A. Alzahrani Copyright © 2016 Fatma Aboul-Enein et al. All rights reserved. Myocardial Viability: From Proof of Concept to Clinical Practice Sun, 29 May 2016 12:29:34 +0000 Ischaemic left ventricular (LV) dysfunction can arise from myocardial stunning, hibernation, or necrosis. Imaging modalities have become front-line methods in the assessment of viable myocardial tissue, with the aim to stratify patients into optimal treatment pathways. Initial studies, although favorable, lacked sufficient power and sample size to provide conclusive outcomes of viability assessment. Recent trials, including the STICH and HEART studies, have failed to confer prognostic benefits of revascularisation therapy over standard medical management in ischaemic cardiomyopathy. In lieu of these recent findings, assessment of myocardial viability therefore should not be the sole factor for therapy choice. Optimization of medical therapy is paramount, and physicians should feel comfortable in deferring coronary revascularisation in patients with coronary artery disease with reduced LV systolic function. Newer trials are currently underway and will hopefully provide a more complete understanding of the pathos and management of ischaemic cardiomyopathy. Aditya Bhat, Gary C. H. Gan, Timothy C. Tan, Chijen Hsu, and Alan Robert Denniss Copyright © 2016 Aditya Bhat et al. All rights reserved. Frequency of Specific Cardiovascular Disease Risk Factors among Cameroonian Patients on Dialysis: The Cases of Anaemia, Inflammation, Phosphate, and Calcium Sun, 22 May 2016 08:15:19 +0000 Specific cardiovascular risk factors are known to contribute to increasing cardiovascular mortality in patients with chronic renal disease. However, little is known about their distribution in our population. This study aimed at determining the prevalence of anaemia, inflammation, and phosphocalcium disorders in Cameroonian patients on dialysis. Thirty-five participants with stage V chronic kidney disease (defined by glomerular filtration rate, GFR < 15 mL/1.73 m3) of age at least 20 years on haemodialysis were randomly recruited. A control group composed of persons without a history of renal or cardiovascular disease was also recruited. Haemoglobin concentration, serum phosphate concentration, serum calcium concentration, and CRP status as a marker of inflammation were determined for all participants. Anaemia, phosphocalcium metabolic disorders, and a positive CRP result among haemodialysed patients were estimated at 94.3%, 61.6%, and 77.1%, respectively. Anaemia was diagnosed in all female patients compared to 92% in males, while a positive CRP result was recorded in 90% of females and 72% of males. No significant differences were observed on the distribution of studied specific cardiovascular risk factors with duration of dialysis. Among the factors studied, anaemia was the most encountered. Olivier Pancha Mbouemboue, Olivier Djile Danbe, Marcel Tangyi Tamanji, and Jacques Olivier Ngoufack Copyright © 2016 Olivier Pancha Mbouemboue et al. All rights reserved. Epicardial Fat: Physiological, Pathological, and Therapeutic Implications Tue, 26 Apr 2016 16:17:55 +0000 Epicardial fat is closely related to blood supply vessels, both anatomically and functionally, which is why any change in this adipose tissue’s behavior is considered a potential risk factor for cardiovascular disease development. When proinflammatory adipokines are released from the epicardial fat, this can lead to a decrease in insulin sensitivity, low adiponectin production, and an increased proliferation of vascular smooth muscle cells. These adipokines move from one compartment to another by either transcellular passing or diffusion, thus having the ability to regulate cardiac muscle activity, a phenomenon called vasocrine regulation. The participation of these adipokines generates a state of persistent vasoconstriction, increased stiffness, and weakening of the coronary wall, consequently contributing to the formation of atherosclerotic plaques. Therefore, epicardial adipose tissue thickening should be considered a risk factor in the development of cardiovascular disease, a potential therapeutic target for cardiovascular pathology and a molecular point of contact for “endocrine-cardiology.” Juan Salazar, Eliana Luzardo, José Carlos Mejías, Joselyn Rojas, Antonio Ferreira, José Ramón Rivas-Ríos, and Valmore Bermúdez Copyright © 2016 Juan Salazar et al. All rights reserved. Incidence and Factors Predicting Skin Burns at the Site of Indifferent Electrode during Radiofrequency Catheter Ablation of Cardiac Arrhythmias Sun, 24 Apr 2016 09:35:20 +0000 Radiofrequency catheter ablation (RFA) has become a mainstay for treatment of cardiac arrhythmias. Skin burns at the site of an indifferent electrode patch have been a rare, serious, and likely an underreported complication of RFA. The purpose of this study was to determine the incidence of skin burns in cardiac RFA procedures performed at one institution. Also, we wanted to determine the factors predicting skin burns after cardiac RFA procedures at the indifferent electrode skin pad site. Methods. A retrospective case control study was performed to compare the characteristics in patients who developed skin burns in a 2-year period. Results. Incidence of significant skin burns after RFA was 0.28% (6/2167). Four of the six patients were female and all were Caucasians. Four controls for every case were age and sex matched. Burn patients had significantly higher BMI, procedure time, and postprocedure pain, relative to control subjects (p < 0.05, one-tailed testing). No one in either group had evidence of dispersive pad malattachment. Conclusions. Our results indicate that burn patients had higher BMI and longer procedure times compared to control subjects. These findings warrant further larger studies on this topic. Hussain Ibrahim, Bohuslav Finta, and Jubran Rind Copyright © 2016 Hussain Ibrahim et al. All rights reserved. The Modification Effect of Influenza Vaccine on Prognostic Indicators for Cardiovascular Events after Acute Coronary Syndrome: Observations from an Influenza Vaccination Trial Wed, 20 Apr 2016 13:07:29 +0000 Introduction. The prognosis of acute coronary syndrome (ACS) patients has been improved with several treatments such as antithrombotics, beta-blockers, and angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (ACEI) as well as coronary revascularization. Influenza vaccination has been shown to reduce adverse outcomes in ACS, but no information exists regarding the interaction of other treatments. Methods. This study included 439 ACS patients from Phrommintikul et al. A single dose of inactivated influenza vaccine was given by intramuscular injection in the vaccination group. The cardiovascular outcomes were described as major cardiovascular events (MACEs) which included mortality, hospitalization due to ACS, and hospitalization due to heart failure (HF). The stratified and multivariable Cox’s regression analysis was performed. Results. The stratified Cox’s analysis by influenza vaccination for each cardiovascular outcome and discrimination of hazard ratios showed that beta-blockers had an interaction with influenza vaccination. Moreover, the multivariable hazard ratios disclosed that influenza vaccine is associated with a significant reduction of hospitalization due to HF in patients who received beta-blockers (HR = 0.05, 95% CI = 0.004–0.71, ), after being adjusted for prognostic indicators (sex, dyslipidemia, serum creatinine, and left ventricular ejection fraction). Conclusions. The influenza vaccine was shown to significantly modify the effect of beta-blockers in ACS patients and to reduce the hospitalization due to HF. However, further study of a larger population and benefits to HF patients should be investigated. Apirak Sribhutorn, Arintaya Phrommintikul, Wanwarang Wongcharoen, Usa Chaikledkaew, Suntara Eakanunkul, and Apichard Sukonthasarn Copyright © 2016 Apirak Sribhutorn et al. All rights reserved. Progenitor Hematopoietic Cells Implantation Improves Functional Capacity of End Stage Coronary Artery Disease Patients with Advanced Heart Failure Mon, 11 Apr 2016 13:31:18 +0000 Background. Proangiogenic Hematopoietic Cells (PHC) which comprise diverse mixture of cell types are able to secrete proangiogenic factors and interesting candidate for cell therapy. The aim of this study was to seek for benefit in implantation of PHC on functional improvement in end stage coronary artery disease patients with advanced heart failure. Methods. Patients with symptomatic heart failure despite guideline directed medical therapy and LVEF less than 35% were included. Peripheral blood mononuclear cells were isolated, cultivated for 5 days, and then harvested. Flow cytometry and cell surface markers were used to characterize PHC. The PHC were delivered retrogradely via sinus coronarius. Echocardiography, myocardial perfusion, and clinical and functional data were analyzed up to 1-year observation. Results. Of 30 patients ( yo) preimplant NT proBNP level is  pmol/L. Harvested cells characterized with CD133, CD34, CD45, and KDR showed , , , and %, respectively. LVEF was improved ( versus , ) during short and long term observation. Myocardial perfusion significantly improved 6 months after treatment. NYHA Class and six-minute walk test are improved during short term and long term follow-up. Conclusion. Expanded peripheral blood PHC implantation using retrograde delivery approach improved LV systolic function, myocardial perfusion, and functional capacity. Yoga Yuniadi, Yuyus Kusnadi, Lakshmi Sandhow, Rendra Erika, Dicky A. Hanafy, Caroline Sardjono, R. W. M. Kaligis, Manoefris Kasim, and Ganesja M. Harimurti Copyright © 2016 Yoga Yuniadi et al. All rights reserved. Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Cardiomyocytes Afford New Opportunities in Inherited Cardiovascular Disease Modeling Sun, 27 Mar 2016 10:11:21 +0000 Fundamental studies of molecular and cellular mechanisms of cardiovascular disease pathogenesis are required to create more effective and safer methods of their therapy. The studies can be carried out only when model systems that fully recapitulate pathological phenotype seen in patients are used. Application of laboratory animals for cardiovascular disease modeling is limited because of physiological differences with humans. Since discovery of induced pluripotency generating induced pluripotent stem cells has become a breakthrough technology in human disease modeling. In this review, we discuss a progress that has been made in modeling inherited arrhythmias and cardiomyopathies, studying molecular mechanisms of the diseases, and searching for and testing drug compounds using patient-specific induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes. Daniel R. Bayzigitov, Sergey P. Medvedev, Elena V. Dementyeva, Sevda A. Bayramova, Evgeny A. Pokushalov, Alexander M. Karaskov, and Suren M. Zakian Copyright © 2016 Daniel R. Bayzigitov et al. All rights reserved. Obesity Related Coronary Microvascular Dysfunction: From Basic to Clinical Practice Tue, 22 Mar 2016 12:42:14 +0000 Obesity related coronary microvascular disease is a medical entity which is not yet fully elucidated. The pathophysiological basis of coronary microcirculatory dysfunction consists of a heterogeneous group of disorders with individual morphologic/functional/clinical presentation and prognosis. Coronary microcirculatory changes include mechanisms connected with vascular dysfunction, as well as extravascular and vasostructural changes in responses to neural, mechanical, and metabolic factors. Cardiometabolic changes that include obesity, dyslipidemia, diabetes mellitus type II, and hypertension are associated with atherosclerosis of epicardial coronary arteries and/or microvascular coronary dysfunction, with incompletely understood underlying mechanisms. In obesity, microvascular disease is mediated via adipokines/cytokines causing chronic, subclinical inflammation with (a) reduced NO-mediated dilatation, (b) changed endothelial- and smooth muscle-dependent vasoregulating mechanisms, (c) altered vasomotor control with increased sympathetic activity, and (d) obesity related hypertension with cardiomyocytes hypertrophy and impaired cardiac vascular adaptation to metabolic needs. From a clinical point of view it can present itself in acute or chronic form with different prognosis, as a practice problem for real-life diagnosis and treatment. K. Selthofer-Relatić, I. Bošnjak, and A. Kibel Copyright © 2016 K. Selthofer-Relatić et al. All rights reserved. The Effect of Adoption of an Electronic Health Record on Duplicate Testing Mon, 21 Mar 2016 09:14:29 +0000 Background. The electronic health record (EHR) has been promoted as a tool to improve quality of patient care, reduce costs, and improve efficiency. There is little data to confirm that the use of EHR has reduced duplicate testing. We sought to evaluate the rate of performance of repeat transthoracic echocardiograms before and after the adoption of EHR. Methods. We retrospectively examined the rates of repeat echocardiograms performed before and after the implementation of an EHR system. Results. The baseline rate of repeat testing before EHR was 4.6% at six months and 7.6% at twelve months. In the first year following implementation of EHR, 6.6% of patients underwent a repeat study within 6 months, and 12.9% within twelve months. In the most recent year of EHR usage, 5.7% of patients underwent repeat echocardiography at six months and 11.9% within twelve months. All rates of duplicate testing were significantly higher than their respective pre-EHR rates ( for all). Conclusion. Our study failed to demonstrate a reduction in the rate of duplicate echocardiography testing after the implementation of an EHR system. We feel that this data, combined with other recent analyses, should promote a more rigorous assessment of the initial claims of the benefits associated with EHR implementation. Todd C. Kerwin, Harmony Leighton, Kunal Buch, Azriel Avezbadalov, and Hormoz Kianfar Copyright © 2016 Todd C. Kerwin et al. All rights reserved. Comparison between First- and Second-Generation Cryoballoon for Paroxysmal Atrial Fibrillation Ablation Wed, 16 Mar 2016 08:35:57 +0000 Introduction. Cryoballoon (CB) ablation has emerged as a novel treatment for pulmonary vein isolation (PVI) for patients with paroxysmal atrial fibrillation (PAF). The second-generation Arctic Front Advance (ADV) was redesigned with technical modifications aiming at procedural and outcome improvements. We aimed to compare the efficacy of the two different technologies over a long-term follow-up. Methods. A total of 120 patients with PAF were enrolled. Sixty patients underwent PVI using the first-generation CB and 60 patients with the ADV catheter. All patients were evaluated over a follow-up period of 2 years. Results. There were no significant differences between the two groups of patients. Procedures performed with the first-generation CB showed longer fluoroscopy time ( versus  min, resp.; ) and longer procedure times as well ( versus  min, resp.; ). The overall long-term success was significantly different between the two groups (68.3 versus 86.7%, resp.; ). No differences were found in the lesion areas of left and right PV between the two groups (resp., and ). There were no significant differences in procedural-related complications. Conclusion. The ADV catheter compared to the first-generation balloon allows obtaining a significantly higher success rate after a single PVI procedure during the long-term follow-up. Fluoroscopy and procedural times were significantly shortened using the ADV catheter. Sergio Conti, Massimo Moltrasio, Gaetano Fassini, Fabrizio Tundo, Stefania Riva, Antonio Dello Russo, Michela Casella, Benedetta Majocchi, Vittoria Marino, Pasquale De Iuliis, Valentina Catto, Salvatore Pala, and Claudio Tondo Copyright © 2016 Sergio Conti et al. All rights reserved. Correlation between Doppler, Manual Morphometry, and Histopathology Based Morphometry of Radial Artery as a Conduit in Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting Mon, 07 Mar 2016 12:52:35 +0000 Background. Long-term graft patency is the major factor impacting survival after coronary artery bypass grafting. Arteries are superior in this regard. Radial artery is considered the second best conduit after internal mammary artery. Several studies have shown excellent radial artery patency. We evaluated the morphologic characteristics of radial artery by three modalities, (i) preoperative Doppler ultrasound, (ii) intraoperative manual morphometry, and (iii) postoperative histology-based morphometry, and compared these with the aim of validating Doppler as a noninvasive test of choice for preoperative assessment of radial artery. Methods. This was a prospective study involving 100 patients undergoing coronary artery bypass grafting in which radial artery was used. The radial artery was assessed using preoperative Doppler ultrasound studies, intraoperative morphometry, and postoperative histopathology and morphometry. The morphometric measurements included (i) luminal diameter, (ii) intimal and medial thickness, and (iii) intima-media thickness ratio. Results. Using Bland-Altman plots, there was a 95% limit of agreement between the preoperative Doppler measurements and the postoperative histopathology and morphometry. Conclusion. Doppler ultrasound is an accurate screening test for evaluation of radial artery, in terms of intimal/medial thickness and luminal diameter as a conduit in coronary artery bypass grafting and has been validated by both morphometric and histopathology based studies. Om Prakash Yadava, Vinod Sharma, Arvind Prakash, Vikas Ahlawat, Anirban Kundu, Bikram K. Mohanty, Rekha Mishra, and Amit K. Dinda Copyright © 2016 Om Prakash Yadava et al. All rights reserved. Depression and Anxiety following Coronary Artery Bypass Graft: Current Indian Scenario Mon, 29 Feb 2016 16:46:02 +0000 Epidemiological studies have shown a high prevalence of coronary artery disease among the Indian Population. Due to increasing availability and affordability of tertiary care in many parts of India, carefully selected patients undergo coronary artery bypass surgery to improve cardiac function. However, the procedure is commonly associated with depression and anxiety which can adversely affect overall prognosis. The objective of this review is to highlight early identifiable symptoms of depression and anxiety following coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) in Indian context so as to facilitate prompt intervention for better outcome. The current review was able to establish firm evidence in support of screening for depression and anxiety following CABG. Management of depression and anxiety following CABG is briefly reviewed. Suprakash Chaudhury, Rajiv Saini, Ajay Kumar Bakhla, and Jaswinder Singh Copyright © 2016 Suprakash Chaudhury et al. All rights reserved. Impact of Additional Transthoracic Electrical Cardioversion on Cardiac Function and Atrial Fibrillation Recurrence in Patients with Persistent Atrial Fibrillation Who Underwent Radiofrequency Catheter Ablation Sun, 28 Feb 2016 13:58:09 +0000 Backgrounds and Objective. During the procession of radiofrequency catheter ablation (RFCA) in persistent atrial fibrillation (AF), transthoracic electrical cardioversion (ECV) is required to terminate AF. The purpose of this study was to determine the impact of additional ECV on cardiac function and recurrence of AF. Methods and Results. Persistent AF patients received extensive encircling pulmonary vein isolation (PVI) and additional line ablation. Patients were divided into two groups based on whether they need transthoracic electrical cardioversion to terminate AF: electrical cardioversion (ECV group) and nonelectrical cardioversion (NECV group). Among 111 subjects, 35 patients were returned to sinus rhythm after ablation by ECV (ECV group) and 76 patients had AF termination after the ablation processions (NECV group). During the 12-month follow-ups, the recurrence ratio of patients was comparable in ECV group (15/35) and NECV group (34/76) (44.14% versus 44.74%, ). Although left atrial diameters (LAD) decreased significantly in both groups, there were no significant differences in LAD and left ventricular cardiac function between ECV group and NECV group. Conclusions. This study revealed that ECV has no significant impact on the maintenance of SR and the recovery of cardiac function. Therefore, ECV could be applied safely to recover SR during the procedure of catheter ablation of persistent atrial fibrillation. Deguo Wang, Fengxiang Zhang, and Ancai Wang Copyright © 2016 Deguo Wang et al. All rights reserved. Role of Neutrophil Gelatinase-Associated Lipocalin in the Diagnosis and Early Treatment of Acute Kidney Injury in a Case Series of Patients with Acute Decompensated Heart Failure: A Case Series Sun, 28 Feb 2016 07:58:53 +0000 Patients with acute decompensated heart failure (ADHF) frequently develop worsening in renal function until Acute Kidney Injury (AKI). The use of kidney injury biomarkers could be useful in the early diagnosis of AKI. In the present study, the role of the neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL), compared to the standard creatinine, in ADHF patients, was analyzed to evaluate if an early treatment could affect the outcome. A case series of 24 ADHF patients was enrolled and patients randomly divided in two groups (Group A and Group B). In Group A, NGAL, creatinine, and eGFR were measured, while in Group B, creatinine and eGFR alone were measured. NGAL was measured by turbidimetric immunoassay and creatinine using an enzymatic spectrophotometric method. In presence of AKI, creatinine increase and eGFR decrease were significantly lower in Group A than in Group B, whereas in absence of AKI the difference between the two groups was not significant. Hospitalization stay was significantly lower in Group A (receiving early treatment based on NGAL) than in Group B. In ADHF patients, plasma NGAL in combination with creatinine was superior to the standard creatinine in the diagnosis and early treatment of AKI with a better outcome and a decreased hospital stay. Silvia Angeletti, Marta Fogolari, Davide Morolla, Federico Capone, Sebastiano Costantino, Silvia Spoto, Marina De Cesaris, Alessandra Lo Presti, Massimo Ciccozzi, and Giordano Dicuonzo Copyright © 2016 Silvia Angeletti et al. All rights reserved. Comparison of the Postprocedural Quality of Life between Coronary Artery Bypass Graft Surgery and Percutaneous Coronary Intervention: A Systematic Review Thu, 18 Feb 2016 15:46:34 +0000 The treatment of choice between coronary artery bypass graft surgery (CABG) and percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) has remained unclear. Considering quality of life (QOL) increases life expectancy, we believe QOL should be important in determining the optimum treatment. Thus the objective of this review was to illustrate the comparative effects of CABG and PCI on postprocedural QOL. Methods. We searched PubMed (Medline) and Embase from inception of the databases to May 2014 using “PCI versus CABG quality of life”, “Percutaneous Coronary intervention versus Coronary artery bypass graft surgery Quality of life”, “PCI versus CABG health status”, “Angioplasty versus CABG”, “Percutaneous coronary intervention versus coronary artery bypass surgery health status”, and different combinations of the above terms. 447 articles were found. After applying strict exclusion criteria, we included 13 studies in this review. Results. From the 9 studies that compared QOL scores at 6 months after procedure, 5 studies reported CABG to be superior. From the 10 studies that compared QOL among patients at 1 year after procedure, 9 reported CABG to be superior. Conclusion. It can be established that CABG is superior to PCI in improving patient’s QOL with respect to all scales used to determine quality of life. Kaneez Fatima, Mohammad Yousuf-ul-Islam, Mehreen Ansari, Faizan Imran Bawany, Muhammad Shahzeb Khan, Akash Khetpal, Neelam Khetpal, Muhammad Nawaz Lashari, Mohammad Hussham Arshad, Raamish Bin Amir, Hoshang Rustom Kakalia, Qaiser Hasan Zaidi, Sharmeen Kamran Mian, and Bahram Kazani Copyright © 2016 Kaneez Fatima et al. All rights reserved. Postinfarct Left Ventricular Remodelling: A Prevailing Cause of Heart Failure Thu, 18 Feb 2016 13:30:16 +0000 Heart failure is a chronic disease with high morbidity and mortality, which represents a growing challenge in medicine. A major risk factor for heart failure with reduced ejection fraction is a history of myocardial infarction. The expansion of a large infarct scar and subsequent regional ventricular dilatation can cause postinfarct remodelling, leading to significant enlargement of the left ventricular chamber. It has a negative prognostic value, because it precedes the clinical manifestations of heart failure. The characteristics of the infarcted myocardium predicting postinfarct remodelling can be studied with cardiac magnetic resonance and experimental imaging modalities such as diffusion tensor imaging can identify the changes in the architecture of myocardial fibers. This review discusses all the aspects related to postinfarct left ventricular remodelling: definition, pathogenesis, diagnosis, consequences, and available therapies, together with experimental interventions that show promising results against postinfarct remodelling and heart failure. Alessio Galli and Federico Lombardi Copyright © 2016 Alessio Galli and Federico Lombardi. All rights reserved. The Role of Adenosine in Pulmonary Vein Isolation: A Critical Review Mon, 15 Feb 2016 09:11:34 +0000 The cornerstone of atrial fibrillation (AF) ablation is pulmonary vein isolation (PVI), which can be achieved in more than 95% of patients at the end of the procedure. However, AF recurrence rates remain high and are related to recovery of PV conduction. Adenosine testing is used to unmask dormant pulmonary vein conduction (DC). The aim of this study is to review the available literature addressing the role of adenosine testing and determine the impact of ablation at sites of PV reconnection on freedom from AF. Adenosine infusion, by restoring the excitability threshold, unmasks reversible injury that could lead to recovery of PV conduction. The studies included in this review suggest that adenosine is useful to unmask nontransmural lesions at risk of reconnection and that further ablation at sites of DC is associated with improvement in freedom from AF. Nevertheless it has been demonstrated that adenosine is not able to predict all veins at risk of later reconnection, which means that veins without DC are not necessarily at low risk. The role of the waiting period in the setting of adenosine testing has also been analyzed, suggesting that in the acute phase adenosine use should be accompanied by enough waiting time. Paolo D. Dallaglio, Timothy R. Betts, Matthew Ginks, Yaver Bashir, Ignasi Anguera, and Kim Rajappan Copyright © 2016 Paolo D. Dallaglio et al. All rights reserved. Cellular and Molecular Mechanisms of Arrhythmia by Oxidative Stress Mon, 15 Feb 2016 06:22:25 +0000 Current therapies for arrhythmia using ion channel blockade, catheter ablation, or an implantable cardioverter defibrillator have limitations, and it is important to search for new antiarrhythmic therapeutic targets. Both atrial fibrillation and heart failure, a condition with increased arrhythmic risk, are associated with excess amount of reactive oxygen species (ROS). There are several possible ways for ROS to induce arrhythmia. ROS can cause focal activity and reentry. ROS alter multiple cardiac ionic currents. ROS promote cardiac fibrosis and impair gap junction function, resulting in reduced myocyte coupling and facilitation of reentry. In order to design effective antioxidant drugs for treatment of arrhythmia, it is essential to explore the molecular mechanisms by which ROS exert these arrhythmic effects. Activation of Ca2+/CaM-dependent kinase II, c-Src tyrosine kinase, protein kinase C, and abnormal splicing of cardiac sodium channels are among the recently discovered molecular mechanisms of ROS-induced arrhythmia. Ali A. Sovari Copyright © 2016 Ali A. Sovari. All rights reserved. Mechanisms and Clinical Management of Ventricular Arrhythmias following Blunt Chest Trauma Thu, 11 Feb 2016 11:41:36 +0000 Nonpenetrating, blunt chest trauma is a serious medical condition with varied clinical presentations and implications. This can be the result of a dense projectile during competitive and recreational sports but may also include other etiologies such as motor vehicle accidents or traumatic falls. In this setting, the manifestation of ventricular arrhythmias has been observed both acutely and chronically. This is based on two entirely separate mechanisms and etiologies requiring different treatments. Ventricular fibrillation can occur immediately after chest wall injury (commotio cordis) and requires rapid defibrillation. Monomorphic ventricular tachycardia can develop in the chronic stage due to underlying structural heart disease long after blunt chest injury. The associated arrhythmogenic tissue may be complex and provides the necessary substrate to form a reentrant VT circuit. Ventricular tachycardia in the absence of overt structural heart disease appears to be focal in nature with rapid termination during ablation. Regardless of the VT mechanism, patients with recurrent episodes, despite antiarrhythmic medication in the chronic stage following blunt chest injury, are likely to require ablation to achieve VT control. This review article will describe the mechanisms, pathophysiology, and treatment of ventricular arrhythmias that occur in both the acute and chronic stages following blunt chest trauma. Daniel H. Wolbrom, Aleef Rahman, and Cory M. Tschabrunn Copyright © 2016 Daniel H. Wolbrom et al. All rights reserved. Utilization and Predictors of Electrical Cardioversion in Patients Hospitalized for Atrial Fibrillation Sun, 07 Feb 2016 09:31:45 +0000 Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a common arrhythmia in adults associated with thromboembolic complications. External electrical cardioversion (DCCV) is a safe procedure used to convert AF to normal sinus rhythm. We sought to study factors that affect utilization of DCCV in hospitalized patients with AF. The study sample was drawn from the Nationwide Inpatient Sample (NIS) of the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project in the United States. Patients with a primary discharge diagnosis of AF that received DCCV during hospitalization in the years 2000–2010 were included. An estimated 2,810,530 patients with a primary diagnosis of AF were hospitalized between 2001 and 2010, of which 1,19,840 (4.26%) received DCCV. The likelihood of receiving DCCV was higher in patients who were males, whites, privately insured, and aged < 40 years and those with fewer comorbid conditions. Higher CHADS2 score was found to have an inverse association with DCCV use. In-hospital stroke, in-hospital mortality, length of stay, and cost for hospitalization were significantly lower for patients undergoing DCCV during AF related hospitalization. Further research is required to study the contribution of other disease and patient related factors affecting the use of this procedure as well as postprocedure outcomes. Yogita M. Rochlani, Nishi N. Shah, Naga V. Pothineni, and Hakan Paydak Copyright © 2016 Yogita M. Rochlani et al. All rights reserved. The Use of IL-1 Receptor Antagonist (Anakinra) in Idiopathic Recurrent Pericarditis: A Narrative Review Sun, 31 Jan 2016 14:23:03 +0000 Recurrent pericarditis is a complication of acute pericarditis in 20–30% of the patients and is usually idiopathic in nature. The underlying pathogenesis of this condition remains unclear, although immune-mediated mechanisms seem likely. A subgroup of these patients with refractory symptoms can be challenging to manage, and multiple immunosuppressive medications have been used without consistent benefit. Anakinra, an interleukin-1 receptor antagonist, has been used in treatment of rheumatoid arthritis and autoinflammatory syndromes. Preliminary evidence suggests that anakinra could be a promising therapy for idiopathic recurrent pericarditis. In this narrative review, we summarize the current understanding of the etiopathogenesis of idiopathic recurrent pericarditis, mechanism of action of anakinra, and the preliminary evidence, supporting the use of anakinra in pericarditis. Shankar Baskar, Allan L. Klein, and Andrew Zeft Copyright © 2016 Shankar Baskar et al. All rights reserved. Consistency between Self-Reported and Recorded Values for Clinical Measures Sun, 31 Jan 2016 12:26:30 +0000 Objectives. This study evaluated consistency between self-reported values for clinical measures and recorded clinical measures. Methods. Self-reported values were collected for the clinical measures: systolic blood pressure, diastolic blood pressure, glucose level, height, weight, and cholesterol from health risk assessments completed by enrollees in a privately insured cohort. Body mass index (BMI) was computed from reported height and weight. Practitioner recorded values for the clinical measures were obtained from health screenings. We used bivariate Pearson correlation analysis and descriptive statistics to evaluate consistency between self-reported data and recorded clinic measurements. Results. There was high correlation between self-reported clinical values and recorded clinical measures for diastolic blood pressure (, ), systolic blood pressure (, ), cholesterol (, ), body mass index (, ), glucose (, ), weight (, ), and height (, ). Conclusions. Self-reported clinical values for each of the eight clinical measures examined had good consistency with practitioner recorded data. Joseph Thomas III, Mindy Paulet, and Jigar R. Rajpura Copyright © 2016 Joseph Thomas III et al. All rights reserved. Assessment of the Protective Role of Prenatal Zinc versus Insulin Supplementation on Fetal Cardiac Damage Induced by Maternal Diabetes in Rat Using Caspase-3 and KI67 Immunohistochemical Stains Wed, 27 Jan 2016 14:27:52 +0000 Maternal diabetes mellitus (DM) affects early organogenesis. Metabolic disorders of DM are associated with a depleted zinc status. This study evaluated the effect of maternal DM on cardiac development of rat fetuses and protective roles of prenatal zinc versus insulin supplementation. Pregnant rats were divided into 4 groups ((I) control, (II) STZ-induced DM, (III) STZ-induced DM treated with Zn, and (IV) STZ induced DM treated with insulin), all sacrificed on GD 20. Fetal heart weight of diabetic rats showed significant decrease compared to controls (). H&E stained section of controls had normal appearance of the myocardium, compared to diabetics that showed myocardial disarray with characteristic degenerative changes. Sections of zinc treated group showed restored architecture of normal myofibrils with minimal degenerative changes, while those of insulin treated group show partial restoration of the normal architecture of cardiomyocytes with focal improvement of cardiac tissue. Caspase-3 immunostained slides showed positive cytoplasmic immunoreactivity in diabetic group. But KI67 immunostained slides revealed negative nuclear immunoreaction in diabetics. We observed that gestational diabetes was associated with increased risk of fetal myocardial damage that might be caused by increased apoptotic level. Treating diabetic pregnant subjects with zinc and insulin was associated with improvement in myocardial integrity. Ahmed S. Shams, Mona H. Mohammed, Mona M. Loka, and Gamal M. Abdel Rahman Copyright © 2016 Ahmed S. Shams et al. All rights reserved. Early and Long-Term Results of Stent Implantation for Aortic Coarctation in Pediatric Patients Compared to Adolescents: A Single Center Experience Wed, 27 Jan 2016 14:06:30 +0000 Background. Stents have become the treatment of choice for native aortic coarctation in adults and adolescents, but in pediatric patients insufficient data are currently available to identify the best therapeutic option. Methods. To compare the outcomes of pediatric and adolescent patients, we retrospectively evaluated early and long-term results of stenting for aortic coarctation in 34 patients divided into 2 groups (A and B) composed, respectively, of 17 children (mean age , weight ≤30 kg) and 17 adolescents (mean age , weight >30 kg). Results. No significant differences in outcome were found between groups immediately after the procedure. In all of our patients, peak systolic gradient pressure significantly decreased after stenting from to  mmHg in group A and from to in group B (). We observed early and late adverse events in both groups: early femoral vessel injury or thrombosis was more frequent in younger patients, as well as restenosis due to vessel growth requiring stent redilatations, often complicated by stent fractures. Data from long-term follow-up showed that, in younger patients, stress-related hypertension was more frequent. Conclusions. The procedure was immediately safe and effective in both groups. Pediatric patients must be accurately selected before stenting because they could probably need reinterventions and stents could impact on their future therapeutic perspectives. Sara Bondanza, Maria Grazia Calevo, and Maurizio Marasini Copyright © 2016 Sara Bondanza et al. All rights reserved. L-Type Calcium Channels Do Not Play a Critical Role in Chest Blow Induced Ventricular Fibrillation: Commotio Cordis Tue, 26 Jan 2016 06:42:06 +0000 Background. In a commotio cordis swine model, ventricular fibrillation (VF) can be induced by a ball blow to the chest believed secondary to activation of mechanosensitive ion channels. The purpose of the current study is to evaluate whether stretch induced activation of the L-type calcium channel may cause intracellular calcium overload and underlie the VF in commotio cordis. Method and Results. Anesthetized juvenile swine received 6 chest wall strikes with a 17.9 m/s lacrosse ball timed to the vulnerable period for VF induction. Animals were randomized to IV verapamil () or placebo (). There was no difference in the observed frequency of VF between verapamil (19/26: 73%) and placebo (20/36: 56%) treated animals (). There was also no significant difference in the combined endpoint of VF or nonsustained VF (21/26: 81% in verapamil versus 24/36: 67% in controls, ). Conclusions. In this experimental model of commotio cordis, verapamil did not prevent VF induction. Thus, in commotio cordis it is unlikely that stretch activation of the L-type calcium channel with resultant intracellular calcium overload plays a prominent role. Christopher Madias, Ann C. Garlitski, John Kalin, and Mark S. Link Copyright © 2016 Christopher Madias et al. All rights reserved.