Clinical profile of stroke in 900 patients with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy

J Am Coll Cardiol. 2002 Jan 16;39(2):301-7. doi: 10.1016/s0735-1097(01)01727-2.


Objectives: We sought to assess the occurrence and clinical significance of stroke and peripheral arterial embolizations at non-central nervous system sites in a large, community-based cohort with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM).

Background: Such vascular events are insufficiently appreciated complications of HCM for which there is limited information on occurrence, clinical profile and determinants.

Methods: We assessed the clinical features of patients with stroke and other peripheral vascular events in a consecutive group of patients with HCM from four regional cohorts not subject to significant tertiary referral bias.

Results: Of the 900 patients, 51 (6%) patients experienced stroke or other vascular events over 7 +/- 7 years, including 44 patients with stroke; 21 (41%) of these 51 patients died or were permanently disabled. The overall incidence was 0.8%/year and 1.9% for patients >60 years old. Age at first event ranged from 29 to 86 years (mean 61 +/- 14 years). Most (n = 37; 72%) events occurred in those >50 years, although 14 (28%) younger patients (< or = 50 years) also had events. Multivariate analysis showed stroke and other peripheral vascular events to be independently associated with congestive symptoms and advanced age, as well as with atrial fibrillation (in 45 [88%] of 51 patients), at the initial evaluation. The cumulative incidence of these events among patients with atrial fibrillation was significantly higher in non-anticoagulated patients as compared with patients receiving warfarin (31% vs. 18%; p < 0.05).

Conclusions: Stroke and peripheral embolizations showed a 6% prevalence rate and an incidence of 0.8%/year in a large, unselected HCM group. These profound complications of HCM, which may lead to disability and death, were substantially more common in the elderly, occurred almost exclusively in patients with paroxysmal or chronic atrial fibrillation and appeared to be reduced in frequency by anticoagulation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Anticoagulants / therapeutic use
  • Cardiomyopathy, Hypertrophic / complications*
  • Embolism / etiology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Assessment
  • Stroke / epidemiology
  • Stroke / etiology*
  • Stroke / prevention & control
  • Warfarin / therapeutic use


  • Anticoagulants
  • Warfarin