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Characteristics and clinical assessment of unexplained sudden cardiac arrest in the real-world setting: focus on idiopathic ventricular fibrillation

Characteristics and clinical assessment of unexplained sudden cardiac arrest in the real-world... AimsRecent studies have shown that in more than half of apparently unexplained sudden cardiac arrests (SCA), a specific aetiology can be unmasked by a careful evaluation. The characteristics and the extent to which such cases undergo a systematic thorough investigation in real-life practice are unknown.Methods and resultsData were analysed from an ongoing study, collecting all cases of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest in Paris area. Investigations performed during the index hospitalization or planned after discharge were gathered to evaluate the completeness of assessment of unexplained SCA. Between 2011 and 2016, among the 18 622 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests, 717 survivors (at hospital discharge) fulfilled the definition of cardiac SCA. Of those, 88 (12.3%) remained unexplained after electrocardiogram, echocardiography, and coronary angiography. Cardiac magnetic resonance imaging yielded the diagnosis in 25 (3.5%) cases, other investigations accounted for 14 (2.4%) additional diagnoses, and 49 (6.8%) patients were labelled as idiopathic ventricular fibrillation (IVF) (48.7 ± 15 years, 69.4% male). Among those labelled IVF, only 8 (16.3%) cases benefited from a complete workup (including pharmacological testing). Younger patients [odds ratio (OR) 6.00, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.80–22.26] and those admitted to university centres (OR 3.60, 95% CI 1.12–12.45) were more thoroughly investigated. Genetic testing and family screening were initiated in only 9 (18.4%) and 12 (24.5%) cases, respectively.ConclusionOur findings suggest that complete investigations are carried out in a very low proportion of unexplained SCA. Standardized, systematic approaches need to be implemented to ensure that opportunities for specific therapies and preventive strategies (including relatives) are not missed. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png European Heart Journal Oxford University Press

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References (119)

Publisher
Oxford University Press
Copyright
© The Author(s) 2018. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Society of Cardiology.
ISSN
0195-668X
eISSN
1522-9645
DOI
10.1093/eurheartj/ehy098
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

AimsRecent studies have shown that in more than half of apparently unexplained sudden cardiac arrests (SCA), a specific aetiology can be unmasked by a careful evaluation. The characteristics and the extent to which such cases undergo a systematic thorough investigation in real-life practice are unknown.Methods and resultsData were analysed from an ongoing study, collecting all cases of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest in Paris area. Investigations performed during the index hospitalization or planned after discharge were gathered to evaluate the completeness of assessment of unexplained SCA. Between 2011 and 2016, among the 18 622 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests, 717 survivors (at hospital discharge) fulfilled the definition of cardiac SCA. Of those, 88 (12.3%) remained unexplained after electrocardiogram, echocardiography, and coronary angiography. Cardiac magnetic resonance imaging yielded the diagnosis in 25 (3.5%) cases, other investigations accounted for 14 (2.4%) additional diagnoses, and 49 (6.8%) patients were labelled as idiopathic ventricular fibrillation (IVF) (48.7 ± 15 years, 69.4% male). Among those labelled IVF, only 8 (16.3%) cases benefited from a complete workup (including pharmacological testing). Younger patients [odds ratio (OR) 6.00, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.80–22.26] and those admitted to university centres (OR 3.60, 95% CI 1.12–12.45) were more thoroughly investigated. Genetic testing and family screening were initiated in only 9 (18.4%) and 12 (24.5%) cases, respectively.ConclusionOur findings suggest that complete investigations are carried out in a very low proportion of unexplained SCA. Standardized, systematic approaches need to be implemented to ensure that opportunities for specific therapies and preventive strategies (including relatives) are not missed.

Journal

European Heart JournalOxford University Press

Published: Mar 16, 2018

Keywords: Sudden death; Ventricular fibrillation; Workup; Prevention; Genetics; Family

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