Electrocardiographic evolution of posterior acute myocardial infarction: importance of early precordial ST-segment depression

Am J Cardiol. 1987 Apr 1;59(8):782-7. doi: 10.1016/0002-9149(87)91091-5.


Precordial ST-segment depression is typically observed in anterior non-Q-wave acute myocardial infarction (AMI), and is generally not regarded as an indication for acute thrombolytic therapy. Of 544 patients with creatine kinase (CK)-MB-confirmed non-Q-wave AMI randomized to the prospective multicenter Diltiazem Reinfarction Study, 50 patients (9.2%) had isolated precordial ST-segment depression of 1 mm or more in 2 or more contiguous precordial electrocardiographic leads (V1-V4). Serial electrocardiograms recorded at study entry (mean 50.5 hours after onset of chest pain), on study day 2, study day 3 and at predischarge showed that in 23 of 50 patients (40%) electrocardiographic evidence of posterior AMI evolved, defined as an R wave of 0.04 second or more in lead V1 and an R:S greater than or equal to 1 in lead V2. In 18 of these 23 patients (78%), posterior AMI had evolved by study day 3, and none had an abnormal reelevation of CK-MB (every 12-hour sampling) for up to 14 days of hospitalization. Compared with the remaining 27 patients who had electrocardiographic features of anterior non-Q-wave AMI only, the 23 with initial precordial ST segment depression in whom posterior AMI developed had significantly higher mean peak CK values (1,051 +/- 172 vs 663 +/- 89 IU, p less than 0.009) and greater mean precordial ST-segment depression in lead V1 (0.28 vs + 0.19 mm, p = 0.01), in lead V2 (1.3 vs 0.26 mm, p = 0.003) and in lead V3 (2.0 vs 0.93 mm, p = 0.0004).(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

MeSH terms

  • Creatine Kinase / blood
  • Diltiazem / therapeutic use
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Electrocardiography*
  • Humans
  • Isoenzymes
  • Myocardial Infarction / drug therapy
  • Myocardial Infarction / enzymology
  • Myocardial Infarction / physiopathology*
  • Random Allocation


  • Isoenzymes
  • Creatine Kinase
  • Diltiazem