American Heart Association

Watch out for heart failure in patients with arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy/dysplasia

Contributor: Chris Sobowale

Natural history is catching up when arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy/dysplasia (ARVC/D) patients develop heart failure.

ARVC/D is an inherited cardiomyopathy in which myocardium is replaced with fibro-fatty tissue.  This is followed by development of right ventricular dysfunction and ventricular arrhythmia.

Why are heart failure specialists seeing more patients with ARVC/D? The patients are living longer. Increased awareness allows timely diagnosis. ICD implantation prevents sudden cardiac death. As a result, ARVC/D patients eventually develop heart failure. Gilotra et al explores the increased prevalence of HF related to ARVC/D and characterizes the evolution to HF.

Sacubitril/Valsartan improves quality of life in patients with HFrEF

Contributor: Nicholas Hawkes

Quality not quantity. Why not both? It is established that sacubitril/valsartan is superior to enalapril (or dose-equivalent ACE-I) when it comes to mortality and morbidity in HFrEF. But what about quality of life (QoL)? Patients enrolled in PARADIGM-HF had increased quality of life when randomized to sacubitril/valsartan.

Progenitor cells are decreased in heart failure and specific to HF type

Contributor: Mat Bull

Do progenitor cells matter for patients with HF? First, what is a progenitor cell? A progenitor cell is a stem cell that has potential to differentiate into multiple different cell types. Progenitor cells are classified by cluster of differentiation surface markers, which act as receptors and ligands to their target tissue. CD34+ progenitor cells have been shown to play a role in vascular and myocardial regeneration and in this article are shown to be an important biomarker in heart failure.

Concentric left ventricular hypertrophy rarely leads to dilated cardiomyopathy

Contributor: Jennifer Huang

Does concentric left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH) progress to dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM)? It may not be as common as we previously thought and the transition may occur over decades.

1,386 participants of the Dallas Heart Study without baseline LV dilation were included. Ten percent of the participants had baseline LVH (7.2 g/mL0.67  for men and 5.8 g/mL0.67 for women). The study population had a mean age of 44 years, 57% women and 43% black patients. Of note, patients that developed cardiovascular disease during the study period (MI, CABG, PCI, stroke or HF) were not included in the final cohort of 1282. Baseline and follow up cardiac magnetic resonance imaging was performed a median of 7 years after baseline imaging.

The more the merrier? Dose of ACE-I/ARBs and outcomes in HFrEF

Contributor: Steven Stroud

It is reported that more is more for HFrEF patients and angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor (ACE-I) and angiotensin receptor blocker (ARB) therapy. In a recent meta-analysis of six randomized trials*, higher doses of ACE-I/ARBs were associated with a reduction in all-cause mortality. Of note, when the ARB trial (HEAAL) was taken out of the analysis, higher dose ACE-I alone did not reach statistical significance.