DOI: 10.1161/circ.148.suppl_1.17652 ISSN: 0009-7322

Abstract 17652: Association Between Ventricular Arrhythmias and Myocardial Fibrosis in Patients With Chagas Disease Without Known Cardiomyopathy

Radhika Gulhar, Michael Jiang, Justin Hayase, Aneeq Malik
  • Physiology (medical)
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

Introduction: Chagas disease (CD) is an important cause of cardiomyopathy, arrhythmias and sudden death. The presence of myocardial fibrosis detected by late gadolinium enhancement (LGE) on cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (CMR) in these patients has been correlated with an increased prevalence of ventricular arrhythmias. The incidence of ventricular arrhythmias in patients with CD without established cardiomyopathy has not been well described.

Hypothesis: We aim to evaluate if there is an association between LGE on CMR and incidence of ventricular arrhythmias in patients with CD but without cardiomyopathy.

Methods: Patients treated at a Chagas disease center of excellence were retrospectively analyzed for ambulatory rhythm monitoring (Holter and/or 14-day patch monitor) and CMR data. Significant ventricular arrhythmias were defined as either a PVC burden >/=1% or non-sustained ventricular tachycardia (NSVT) ≥4 beats. A Fisher exact test was used to compare categorical variables.

Results: There were 191 patients treated between 12/2014 and 8/2022 available for analysis. Of these, 46 patients with CD and no prior history of cardiomyopathy received both ambulatory rhythm monitoring and CMR. There were 16 male and 30 female patients with average age of 52.2 ± 11.5 years, and LV ejection fraction of 58.8% ± 14.2%. Of the 46 patients, 15 (32.6%) were found to have LGE on cMRI while 31 (67.4%) had no evidence of LGE. Within the patients with LGE, 8/15 (53.3%) were found to have significant ventricular arrhythmias. Of the patients without LGE, only 7/31 (22.6%) were determined to have significant ventricular arrhythmias (p = 0.038).

Conclusions: These data suggest that for patients with CD without cardiomyopathy, the presence of LGE on CMR is independently associated with incident ventricular arrhythmias detected on ambulatory rhythm monitoring. Whether these findings indicate increased risk of sudden cardiac death requires further study.

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