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Stress Induced Cardiomyopathy Triggered by Acute Myocardial Infarction: A Case Series Challenging the Mayo Clinic Definition

Georgios Christodoulidis, Vishwa Kundoor, Edo Kaluski

(Department of Cardiology, The Guthrie Clinic/Robert Packer Hospital, Sayre, PA, USA)

Am J Case Rep 2017; 18:931-936

DOI: 10.12659/AJCR.902860

BACKGROUND: Various physical and emotional factors have been previously described as triggers for stress induced cardiomyopathy. However, acute myocardial infarction as a trigger has never been reported.
CASE REPORT: We describe four patients who presented with an acute myocardial infarction, in whom the initial echocardiography revealed wall motion abnormalities extending beyond the coronary distribution of the infarct artery. Of the four patients identified, the mean age was 59 years; three patients were women and two patients had underlying psychiatric history. Electrocardiogram revealed ST elevation in the anterior leads in three patients; QTc was prolonged in all cases. All patients had ≤ moderately elevated troponin. Single culprit lesion was found uniformly in the proximal or mid left anterior descending artery. Initial echocardiography revealed severely reduced ejection fraction with relative sparing of the basal segments, whereas early repeat echocardiography revealed significant improvement in the left ventricular function in all patients.
CONCLUSIONS: This is the first case series demonstrating that acute myocardial infarction can trigger stress induced cardiomyopathy. Extensive reversible wall motion abnormalities, beyond the ones expected from angiography, accompanied by modest elevation in troponin and marked QTc prolongation, suggest superimposed stress induced cardiomyopathy.

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