Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy during corticotropin therapy for infantile spasms. A clinical and echocardiographic study

Am J Dis Child. 1993 Feb;147(2):223-5. doi: 10.1001/archpedi.1993.02160260113037.


Objective: To evaluate the incidence and clinical features of abnormal cardiac hypertrophy during treatment of infantile spasms with corticotropin.

Design: A prospective, echocardiographic study.

Participants: Eighteen children treated for infantile spasms with high-dose corticotropin at a large tertiary children's hospital.

Interventions: None.

Measurements and results: Abnormal cardiac hypertrophy was seen in 13 (72%) of 18 patients. Five of 18 patients (group 1) developed hypertrophic cardiomyopathy with asymmetric septal hypertrophy; none developed significant left ventricular outflow obstruction. Concentric left ventricular hypertrophy was seen in eight patients (group 2), whereas no changes were observed in five (group 3).

Conclusion: Abnormal ventricular hypertrophy occurs in the majority of patients treated with corticotropin for infantile spasms. In our study, many of these patients developed hypertrophic cardiomyopathy with dramatic asymmetric septal hypertrophy; however, none developed significant obstruction to left ventricular outflow. All changes were reversible, and did not require premature discontinuation of therapy.

MeSH terms

  • Adrenocorticotropic Hormone / adverse effects*
  • Blood Pressure / drug effects
  • Cardiomyopathy, Hypertrophic / chemically induced*
  • Echocardiography
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Prospective Studies
  • Spasms, Infantile / drug therapy*


  • Adrenocorticotropic Hormone