Spontaneous hemodynamic improvement or stabilization and associated biopsy findings in patients with congestive cardiomyopathy.
The hemodynamic courses of 56 patients with congestive cardiomyopathy (CCM) were investigated. Fourteen patients died within 24 months after diagnosis. The hemodynamic courses of the remaining 42 patients were investigated in subsequent examinations by determination of left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF), mean pulmonary arterial pressure at maximal workload, and peak systolic pressure/end-systolic volume index. During the study interval of 32.2 +/- 20.0 months the conditions of 20 patients (48%) deteriorated, according to their hemodynamic status, and at least five of these died of terminal heart failure. Surprisingly, the conditions of 22 patients (52%) improved or stabilized. One of these died of leukemia. Seven patients in the latter group with initial LVEFs of 0.30 or less experienced an average increase from 0.22 to 0.51. Retrospectively consideration of age, alcohol intake, exercise capacity, and hemodynamic status were not helpful in predicting the course of the disease. In 38 patients endomyocardial biopsy samples could be obtained at the time of diagnosis. Reduced myofibril volume fraction (less than 60%) had prognostic significance for both hemodynamic deterioration and death (sensitivity 23/24 = 96%), while 14 of 15 patients whose conditions improved or stabilized had a myofibril volume fraction of 60% or more (specificity 14/15 or 93%, p less than .002). A relationship between hemodynamic status and the myofibril volume fraction could not be found. Individual patients with CCM differ significantly with respect to course of the disease. A distinct separation of the patients by means of morphologic criteria is possible. This makes it more likely that the pathogenesis of the disease is not unique.
- Copyright © 1985 by American Heart Association