Istituto di Fisiologia Clinica     
Cortigiani L., Bigi R., Rigo F., Landi P., Baldini U., Mariani P. R., Picano E. Diagnostic value of exercise electrocardiography and dipyridamole stress echocardiography in hypertensive and normotensive chest pain patients with right bundle branch block. In: Journal of Hypertension, vol. 21 (11) pp. 2189 - 2194. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc, 2003.
Objectives: Studies on the diagnostic value of exercise electrocardiography in right bundle branch block produced controversial results, and data on the accuracy of stress echo are still lacking. The aim of the study was to compare the diagnostic value of exercise electrocardiography and dipyridamole stress echo in chest pain patients with right bundle branch block, and to verify whether stress testing accuracy is affected by history of hypertension. Methods: The study group was made up of 71 patients (56 men, aged 63 +/- 8 years) with chest pain of unknown origin and complete right bundle branch block. Of them, 35 were hypertensives and 36 normotensives. Patients performed, on different days and in random order, exercise electrocardiography and dipyridamole stress echo and underwent coronary angiography. Results: Significant (>= 70% diameter stenosis) coronary artery disease was found in 34 patients (17 hypertensives and 17 normotensives). Positive exercise electrocardiography (ST-segment shift > 1 mm at 80 ms after the J point in leads V5 and V6 or leads II and Vf) and dipyridamole stress echo (new wall motion abnormalities) were observed in 38 and 30 patients, respectively. The result of tests was concordant in 69% of hypertensives and 92% of normotensives. The two tests shared the same sensitivity in hypertensives (82%) and normotensives (71%). Of 37 patients without coronary artery disease, 12 had a false-positive result during exercise electrocardiography and four during stress echo. The specificity was lower for exercise electrocardiography than for stress echo in hypertensives (50 versus 89%, P = 0.0006), while no difference was evidenced in normotensives (84 versus 89%, P = 0.4). In hypertensives, the accuracy, positive, and negative predictive values were 66, 61, and 75% for exercise electrocardiography, and 86, 87, and 84% for stress echo. Corresponding figures in normotensives were 78, 80, and 76% for exercise electrocardiography, and 81, 86, and 77% for stress echo. Conclusions: In chest-pain patients with right bundle branch block, dipyridamole stress echo was effective to diagnose coronary artery disease in both normotensives and hypertensives. Moreover, it exhibited superior diagnostic information than exercise electrocardiography in hypertensives, due to significantly higher specificity. However, the two tests had similar diagnostic value in normotensives.
URL: http://www.jhypertension.com/pt/re/jhypertension/pdfhandler.00004872-200311000-00030.pdf;jsessionid=FqsJv7KPyJnRZ81v2j6KzN2Tb8rlpP0wnc7TG7T2ChhrThXvsX9d!1057067369!-949856144!8091!-1
Subject Diagnostic

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