Objectives: This study was designed to evaluate the relation between the severity of the residual stenosis of the infarct-related artery and changes in left ventricular volume and function after a first anterior myocardial infarction.
Background: Although thrombolytic therapy improves clinical outcome after acute myocardial infarction, the relations between the severity of the residual stenosis of the infarct-related artery and postinfarction left ventricular remodeling and function are unclear.
Methods: Fifty-eight patients with a first anterior myocardial infarction and significant disease only in the left anterior descending coronary artery on arteriography performed after 7 to 10 days were evaluated. All patients received thrombolytic therapy. Residual stenosis of the infarct-related artery was measured with quantitative coronary arteriography. Left ventricular volumes and ejection fraction were measured by echocardiography and radionuclide angiography, respectively, 7 to 10 days, 6 months and 1 year after infarction. End-diastolic and end-systolic left ventricular volumes were measured by two-dimensional echocardiography and normalized to body surface area. Patients were classified into three groups according to baseline residual stenosis severity: total occlusion (Group I), minimal lesion diameter less than 1.5 mm (Group II) and minimal diameter greater than or equal to 1.5 mm (Group III).
Results: Group I patients had significantly greater left ventricular end-diastolic and end-systolic volumes at 6 months and 1 year than did the other groups. Group II patients had greater end-diastolic and end-systolic volumes than did Group III patients at 1 year. In addition, Group I patients had a lower ejection fraction at 1 year than that of the other groups. The minimal lesion diameter was significantly correlated with percent change in end-diastolic volume at 1 year.
Conclusions: The severity of the baseline residual stenosis of the infarct-related artery is an important predictor of change in left ventricular volumes in the 1st year after infarction. Total occlusion of the infarct-related artery is associated with greater left ventricular dilation and functional impairment.