Cardiomyopathy in children: Can we rely on echocardiographic tricuspid regurgitation gradient estimates of right ventricular and pulmonary arterial pressure?
UNLABELLED:Introduction Agreement between echocardiography and right heart catheterisation-derived right ventricular systolic pressure is modest in the adult heart failure population, but is unknown in the paediatric cardiomyopathy population. METHODS:All patients at a single centre from 2001 to 2012 with a diagnosis of cardiomyopathy who underwent echocardiography and catheterisation within 30 days were included in this study. The correlation between tricuspid regurgitation gradient and catheterisation-derived right ventricular systolic pressure and mean pulmonary artery pressure was determined. Agreement between echocardiography and catheterisation-derived right ventricular systolic pressure was assessed using Bland-Altman plots. Analysis was repeated for patients who underwent both procedures within 7 days. Haemodynamic data from those with poor agreement and good agreement between echocardiography and catheterisation were compared. RESULTS:A total of 37 patients who underwent 48 catheterisation procedures were included in our study. The median age was 11.8 (0.1-20.6 years) with 22 males (58% total). There was a modest correlation (r=0.65) between echocardiography and catheterisation-derived right ventricular systolic pressure, but agreement was poor. Agreement between tricuspid regurgitation gradient and right ventricular systolic pressure showed wide 95% limits of agreement. There was a modest correlation between the tricuspid regurgitation gradient and mean pulmonary artery pressure (r=0.6). Shorter time interval between the two studies did not improve agreement. Those with poor agreement between echocardiography and catheterisation had higher right heart pressures, but this difference became insignificant after accounting for right atrial pressure. CONCLUSION/CONCLUSIONS:Transthoracic echocardiography estimation of right ventricular systolic pressure shows modest correlation with right heart pressures, but has limited agreement and may underestimate the degree of pulmonary hypertension in paediatric cardiomyopathy patients.
Omission of fetal sampling in treatment of subsequent pregnancies in fetal-neonatal alloimmune thrombocytopenia
BACKGROUND:Fetal-neonatal alloimmune thrombocytopenia affects approximately 1 of 1000 live births, most of which are not severely thrombocytopenic. Despite effective treatment with intravenous gammaglobulin and/or prednisone, antenatal management of a subsequent affected pregnancy is complicated by the risks associated with fetal bloodÂ sampling. Furthermore, there are no biomarker(s) of high risk other thanÂ the occurrence of intracranial hemorrhage in a previous sibling. Management of these high-risk pregnancies requires intensive treatment initiated at 12 weeks of gestation. OBJECTIVE:The objective of the study was to evaluate whether empiric escalation of therapy at 32 weeks allows the omission of fetal blood sampling in all fetal-neonatal alloimmune thrombocytopenia-affected patients. Specifically, we sought to determine whether intensive intravenous gammaglobulin-based regimens for the treatment of a subsequent fetal-neonatal alloimmune thrombocytopenia-affected pregnancy followed by empirically escalated intravenous gammaglobulin and prednisone treatment would increase the fetal platelet count and thus safely allow omission of fetal blood sampling in the antepartum management of these patients. STUDY DESIGN/METHODS:In this prospective, multicenter, randomized controlled study, 99 women with fetal-neonatal alloimmune thrombocytopenia whose prior affected child did not have an intracranial hemorrhage were randomized to receive an intensive intravenous gammaglobulin-based regimen: 2 g/kg per week or intravenous gammaglobulin 1 g/kg per week plus prednisone 0.5 mg/kg per day, starting at 20-30 weeks of gestation. Escalated therapy (intravenous gammaglobulin 2 g/kg per week plus prednisone 0.5 mg/kg per day) was recommended and usually initiated at 32 weeks when fetal counts were <50,000/mL(3) or when fetalÂ blood sampling was not performed. The preliminary report of this study from 2007 demonstrated the efficacy of both intravenous gammaglobulin-based regimens in most patients. Most patients who underwent fetal sampling had adequate fetal counts and therefore did notÂ have their treatment escalated. This post hoc analysis describes the 29Â fetuses who had their treatment escalated either because they had lowÂ counts at 32 weeks or when sampling was not performed. This studyÂ explored whether the empiric escalation of treatment at 32 weeks was sufficiently effective in increasing fetal platelet counts in these patients. RESULTS:Mean fetal and birth counts of fetuses randomized to each of the 2 initial treatment groups were all >100,000/mL(3). Three neonates had an intracranial hemorrhage; all 3 were grade 1 and all had birth platelet counts >130,000/mL(3). In a post hoc analysis, 19 fetuses undergoing fetal blood sampling at 32 weeks had fetal platelet counts <50,000/mL(3) despite their initial treatment. Of these 19, birth platelet counts were >50,000/mL(3) in 11 of 13 fetuses who received escalated treatment compared with only 1 of 6 of those who did not (PÂ = .01); only 3 fetuses that received initial therapy followed by escalated treatment hadÂ birth platelet counts <50,000/mL(3) and none had an intracranial hemorrhage. The platelet counts of 14 of 15 fetuses that received empirically escalated treatment without sampling were >50,000/mL(3) at birth. In addition, none of these had an intracranial hemorrhage. CONCLUSION/CONCLUSIONS:The 2 recommended protocols of intensive initial treatment followed by empiric escalation of therapy at 32 weeks of gestation are reasonably safe, effective in increasing fetal platelet counts, and allow omission of fetal blood sampling by increasing the fetal platelet count in almost all cases.
Blood group A mothers are more likely to develop anemia during antenatal intravenous immunoglobulin treatment of fetal and neonatal alloimmune thrombocytopenia
BACKGROUND:Incompatibility between parental platelet (PLT) antigens may lead to sensitization of mother and development of fetal and neonatal alloimmune thrombocytopenia (FNAIT) resulting in fetal thrombocytopenia. Intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) with or without prednisone is the most effective, evidence-based antenatal treatment for subsequent FNAIT-affected pregnancies. IVIG infusion causes hemolysis in other settings, the degree depending upon patient blood groups (BGs). STUDY DESIGN AND METHODS/METHODS:In ClinicalTrials.gov NCT00194987, 102 pregnant women received randomized antenatal treatment: Arm A received 2Â g/kg/week IVIG; Arm B received 1 g/kg/week IVIGâ€‰+â€‰0.5 mg/kg/day prednisone. This post hoc analysis explored BG and anemia in 69 FNAIT mothers treated with Arm A or Arm B without salvage treatment to explore the effects of IVIG and steroid treatment on development of anemia in these women. Mothers whose treatment changed, for example, those with insufficient or unknown fetal PLT response who received salvage therapy, were excluded. RESULTS:For Arm A, 17 of 21 (hemoglobin [Hb]Â <Â 10 g/dL) mothers with anemia but only three of 15 mothers without anemia had BG-A and/or BG-B (pÂ =Â 0.0005). BG was unrelated to anemia in Arm B; only nine of 33 Arm B mothers became anemic during treatment. The mean decrease in Hb level in women with BG-non-O was 1.9Â g/dL and in women with BG-O was 1.1 g/dL (pÂ =Â 0.004). Anemia was not caused by iron deficiency; the lowest mean corpuscular volume was 79. CONCLUSION/CONCLUSIONS:FNAIT women with BG-non-O more frequently develop anemia secondary to high-dose IVIG infusion (2Â g/kg/week), quite possibly from isohemagglutinin-mediated hemolysis; maternal Hb requires monitoring. IVIG at 1Â g/kg/week did not cause anemia in women with BG-non-O; concomitant prednisone likely alleviated the IVIG effect. Maternal BG could influence selection of antenatal treatment for FNAIT.
Prevalence and outcomes of coronary artery ectasia associated with isolated congenital coronary artery fistula
Isolated congenital coronary artery fistula (CAF) is rare and varies with respect to size and hemodynamic significance. The prevalence of coronary artery ectasia in association with isolated congenital CAF, regardless of size, and after closure of large fistulae has not been systematically evaluated in the literature. This study aimed to characterize the demographic and echocardiographic differences between patients with large and small fistulae and to describe outcomes with respect to coronary ectasia in those who underwent closure. This is a retrospective review of an echocardiographic database that identified patients coded for CAF (1995 to 2012) and excluded those associated with complex cardiac disease and/or coronary anomalies and cardiomyopathy. Small fistulae were noted to arise mostly from the left anterior descending artery, drain into the pulmonary artery, and have a very low incidence of ectasia (nÂ = 3 of 92), with a mean coronary artery diameter z score in these 3 patients of 3.45Â Â±Â 1.15. Larger fistulae had a female predominance, with most originating from the right coronary artery and draining into the right atrium; among the 12 patients who underwent procedural closure of large CAF, all feeding coronary arteries remained ectatic after closure, with a mean coronary artery diameter z score of 9.54Â Â±Â 5.66 after a total mean follow-up time of 3.95Â Â±Â 4.07Â years. In conclusion, the occurrence of coronary dilatation justifies long-term follow-up irrespective of fistula size and successful closure of large CAF.
Fetal diagnosis of left-ventricular noncompaction cardiomyopathy in identical twins with discordant congenital heart disease [Case Report]
Left-ventricular noncompaction (LVNC) is characterized by prominent myocardial trabeculae with deep intratrabecular recesses. Associated with ventricular dysfunction, LVNC can present in isolation or in conjunction with structural heart defects (i.e., "nonisolated" LVNC). Although it was once considered to be difficult and unreliable, successful detection of this condition by way of fetal echocardiography has been well documented. We present what is to our knowledge the first prenatal diagnosis of LVNC in monochorionic-monozygotic twins. Nonisolated LVNC was identified in twins A and B at 23 weeks' gestation. A noncompaction-to-compaction ratio >2 was documented in both cases. Discordance for congenital heart disease was observed in the twins: Twin A presented with pulmonary atresia with an intact ventricular septum, critical tricuspid stenosis, and severe right-ventricular hypoplasia, whereas twin B presented with mild mitral valve dysplasia. Despite an initially complicated postnatal course for twin A, this case shows that it is feasible to achieve good outcomes with accurate prenatal detection and aggressive postnatal management.
Antenatal treatment of fetal alloimmune thrombocytopenia: a current perspective [Editorial]