Long-term prognosis of medically treated patients with vasospastic angina and no fixed significant coronary atherosclerosis

Am Heart J. 1988 Mar;115(3):559-64. doi: 10.1016/0002-8703(88)90804-6.


The clinical course of 48 consecutive patients with vasospastic angina and minor coronary atherosclerosis (no stenoses greater than 50%) was analyzed during an average follow-up period of 47 months. The study group consisted of 37 men and 11 women. Patients were treated with usual doses of calcium antagonists. One patient died (2%) and three had myocardial infarctions (6%). Seventy-one percent were asymptomatic or had infrequent angina; 13% had recurrences but had periods of remission lasting at least 10 months. Only 16% had persistent angina. None of the clinical or angiographic findings at the time of diagnosis were predictive of myocardial infarction or death, and they could not separate angina-free patients from those with recurrences. Thus, vasospastic angina without fixed coronary narrowing has a good prognosis despite the possibility of recurrences. However, there is a slight risk of myocardial infarction and death. This fact should be considered if there are plans to discontinue treatment.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Angina Pectoris, Variant / complications
  • Angina Pectoris, Variant / diagnostic imaging
  • Angina Pectoris, Variant / drug therapy*
  • Arteriosclerosis / complications*
  • Calcium Channel Blockers / therapeutic use
  • Coronary Angiography
  • Coronary Disease / complications*
  • Death, Sudden
  • Ergonovine
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prognosis
  • Recurrence
  • Time Factors


  • Calcium Channel Blockers
  • Ergonovine