Prognostic impact of subclinical or manifest extracoronary artery diseases after acute myocardial infarction

Atherosclerosis. 2017 Aug;263:53-59. doi: 10.1016/j.atherosclerosis.2017.05.027. Epub 2017 May 26.


Background and aims: In patients with coronary artery disease (CAD), clinically overt extracoronary artery diseases (ECADs), including claudication or previous strokes, are associated with poor outcomes. Subclinical ECADs detected by screening are common among such patients. We aimed to evaluate the prognostic impact of subclinical versus symptomatic ECADs in patients with acute myocardial infarction (AMI).

Methods: In a prospective observational study, 654 consecutive patients diagnosed with AMI underwent ankle brachial index (ABI) measurements and ultrasonographic screening of the carotid arteries and abdominal aorta. Clinical ECADs were defined as prior strokes, claudication, or extracoronary artery intervention. Subclinical ECADs were defined as the absence of a clinical ECAD in combination with an ABI ≤0.9 or >1.4, carotid artery stenosis, or an abdominal aortic aneurysm.

Results: At baseline, subclinical and clinical ECADs were prevalent in 21.6% and 14.4% of the patients, respectively. Patients with ECADs received evidence-based medication more often at admission but similar medications at discharge compared with patients without ECADs. During a median follow-up of 5.2 years, 166 patients experienced endpoints of hospitalization for AMI, heart failure, stroke, or cardiovascular death. With ECAD-free cases as reference and after adjustment for risk factors, a clinical ECAD (hazard ratio [HR] 2.10, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.34-3.27, p=0.001), but not a subclinical ECAD (HR 1.35, 95% CI 0.89-2.05, p=0.164), was significantly associated with worse outcomes.

Conclusions: Despite receiving similar evidence-based medication at discharge, patients with clinical ECAD, but not patients with a subclinical ECAD, had worse long-term prognosis than patients without an ECAD after AMI.

Keywords: Extracoronary artery disease; Myocardial infarction; Prognosis.

Publication types

  • Observational Study

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Aged
  • Ankle Brachial Index
  • Aorta, Abdominal / diagnostic imaging
  • Carotid Arteries / diagnostic imaging
  • Coronary Artery Disease / complications*
  • Coronary Artery Disease / diagnosis
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Heart Failure
  • Humans
  • Kaplan-Meier Estimate
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Myocardial Infarction / complications*
  • Myocardial Infarction / diagnosis
  • Prognosis
  • Proportional Hazards Models
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Ultrasonography
  • Ventricular Function, Left