Clinical and prognostic significance of detection of enteroviral RNA in the myocardium of patients with myocarditis or dilated cardiomyopathy.
BACKGROUND Enteroviral RNA sequences have been demonstrated in the myocardium of patients with myocarditis or dilated cardiomyopathy from presentation to end-stage disease. The prognosis of heart muscle disease has not previously been evaluated in relation to the detection of enterovirus in myocardial biopsy tissue.
METHODS AND RESULTS We studied 123 consecutive patients with heart muscle disease prospectively. Multiple endomyocardial biopsy samples taken from all patients during diagnostic cardiac catheterization were classified histologically and were examined for enteroviral RNA by use of an enterovirus group-specific hybridization probe. Three enterovirus-negative patients with cardiac amyloidosis were excluded from subsequent analysis. Enteroviral RNA sequences were detectable in 41 (34%) of the remaining 120 patients (group A), while 79 (66%) had no virus detected (group B). The groups did not differ significantly in age, sex, symptomatic presentation, or hemodynamic characteristics; duration of symptoms was significantly shorter in group A (7.8 +/- 9.6 versus 14.9 +/- 19.0 months, P < .05). At follow-up (mean, 25 months; range, 11 to 50 months), patients from group A had an increased mortality compared with those in group B (25% versus 4%, respectively; P = .02). Mortality was also statistically greater in patients with symptomatic cardiac failure (P = .02), those with elevated left ventricular end-diastolic pressures (P = .03), and those in New York Heart Association functional classes III and IV (P = .05). Multivariate regression analysis, however, showed that only the presence of enterovirus RNA and symptomatic heart failure were of independent prognostic value.
CONCLUSIONS These data demonstrate that the detection of enterovirus RNA in the myocardium of patients with heart muscle disease at the time of initial investigation is associated with an adverse prognosis and that the presence of enterovirus RNA is an independent predictor of clinical outcome.
- Copyright © 1994 by American Heart Association