The role of vascular failure in coronary artery spasm

J Cardiol. 2011 Jan;57(1):2-7. doi: 10.1016/j.jjcc.2010.08.007. Epub 2010 Nov 9.


Coronary artery spasm plays an important role in the pathogenesis of angina pectoris as well as acute coronary syndrome and sudden death. The prevalence of coronary spasm is greater in East Asian populations than in other parts of the world. Although the mechanism of coronary spasm is still unclear, both endothelial and smooth muscle dysfunction have been reported to play a role. We recently proposed a new concept termed 'vascular failure' that represents an integration of endothelial and smooth muscle abnormalities. Thus, vascular failure is the primary cause of coronary artery spasm.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Coronary Vasospasm / etiology*
  • Coronary Vasospasm / physiopathology
  • Endothelium, Vascular / physiopathology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Muscle, Smooth, Vascular / physiopathology
  • Vascular Diseases / complications*
  • Vascular Diseases / physiopathology