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Stress cardiomyopathy in critical care: A case series of 109 patients

World J Crit Care Med. 2022 May 9;11(3):149-159. doi: 10.5492/wjccm.v11.i3.149. eCollection 2022 May 9.


BACKGROUND: Critically ill patients are at risk of developing stress cardiomyopathy (SC) but can be under-recognized.

AIM: To describe a case series of patients with SC admitted to critical care units.

METHODS: We conducted a retrospective observational study at a tertiary care teaching hospital. All adult (≥ 18 years old) patients admitted to the critical care units with stress cardiomyopathy over 5 years were included.

RESULTS: Of 24279 admissions to the critical care units [19139 to medical-surgical intensive care units (MSICUs) and 5140 in coronary care units (CCUs)], 109 patients with SC were identified. Sixty (55%) were admitted to the coronary care units (CCUs) and forty-nine (45%) to the medical-surgical units (MSICUs). The overall incidence of SC was 0.44%, incidence in CCU and MSICU was 1.16% and 0.25% respectively. Sixty-two (57%) had confirmed SC and underwent cardiac catheterization whereas 47 (43%) had clinical SC, and did not undergo cardiac catheterization. Forty-three (72%) patients in the CCUs were diagnosed with primary SC, whereas all (100%) patients in MSICUs developed secondary SC. Acute respiratory failure that required invasive mechanical ventilation and shock developed in twenty-nine (59%) MSICU patients. There were no statistically significant differences in intensive care unit (ICU) mortality, in-hospital mortality, use of inotropic or mechanical circulatory support based on type of unit or anatomical variant.

CONCLUSION: Stress cardiomyopathy can be under-recognized in the critical care setting. Intensivists should have a high index of suspicion for SC in patients who develop sudden or worsening unexplained hemodynamic instability, arrhythmias or respiratory failure in ICU.

PMID:36331975 | PMC:PMC9136722 | DOI:10.5492/wjccm.v11.i3.149

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