Management of left ventricular rupture complicating myocardial infarction

J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg. 1983 Sep;86(3):441-3.


Rupture of the left ventricle secondary to myocardial infarction may occur more often than is suspected. More time than anticipated may be available between rupture and catastrophic deterioration. Hemodynamic stabilization, diagnostic studies, and surgical treatment can be successfully undertaken. Four patients have been successfully treated in our institution. Rupture occurred from 1 to 14 days after infarction. Persistent chest pain was present in all. All were hemodynamically unstable and all stabilized with counterpulsation. One patient was in cardiogenic shock, two had a cardiac arrest, and one presented with cardiac tamponade requiring two emergency pericardiocenteses. Coronary arteriography was done in all four patients. Surgical management consisted of infarctectomy and repair of the ventricular rupture. Additionally, a single aortacoronary bypass graft was needed in two patients and repair of a ventricular septal rupture was necessary in a third. There was no operative mortality. One patient drowned 1 year later. We conclude that successful surgical management requires (1) suspicion of ventricular rupture, (2) hemodynamic stabilization by counterpulsation, (3) coronary arteriography, and (4) combined infarctectomy and repair with revascularization.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Cardiac Catheterization
  • Coronary Artery Bypass
  • Female
  • Heart Aneurysm / complications
  • Heart Rupture / complications*
  • Heart Septal Defects, Ventricular / complications
  • Heart Ventricles*
  • Humans
  • Intra-Aortic Balloon Pumping
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Myocardial Infarction / complications*
  • Myocardial Infarction / diagnosis
  • Myocardial Infarction / surgery
  • Shock, Cardiogenic / complications