Spontaneous coronary dissection: a cluster of cases with this rare finding

Am Heart J. 1994 May;127(5):1382-7. doi: 10.1016/0002-8703(94)90060-4.


Spontaneous coronary dissection is a rare entity. It has been reported to be usually fatal, with greater than an 80% mortality rate. From April 1990 through March 1993, 10 patients had spontaneous coronary dissection. This is a significant increase in the incidence of this diagnosis, with only one prior case at this institution in 1983 (p < 0.001). All of the patients survived. Of the 10 patients, eight were women, and seven of those were premenopausal. Only one was post partum. Acute myocardial infarction was the presenting condition in nine patients. Three patients had spontaneous dissections involving two arteries. Only one patient had associated atherosclerotic coronary artery disease. Surgery was required for continued symptoms in three patients, with difficulty grafting the dissected artery in two. Nine patients have no symptoms, and one has class II angina. With aggressive medical therapy the prognosis of patients with spontaneous coronary dissection may not be as dismal as previously reported.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aneurysm, Dissecting / diagnostic imaging*
  • Aneurysm, Dissecting / epidemiology
  • Aneurysm, Dissecting / etiology
  • Coronary Aneurysm / diagnostic imaging*
  • Coronary Aneurysm / epidemiology
  • Coronary Aneurysm / etiology
  • Coronary Angiography
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Los Angeles / epidemiology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged