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Neth Heart J. 2008 Oct;16(10):344-9.

Spontaneous coronary artery dissection: current insights and therapy.

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Department of Cardiology, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht, the Netherlands.


Spontaneous coronary artery dissection (SCAD) is a very rare cause of acute coronary syndromes in young otherwise healthy patients with a striking predilection for the female gender. The pathological mechanism has not been fully clarified yet. However, several diseases and conditions have been associated with SCAD, such as atherosclerosis, connective tissue disorders and the peripartum episode. In this paper we present a review of the literature, discussing the possible mechanisms for SCAD, therapeutic options and prognosis. The review is illustrated with two SCAD patients who had a recurrence of a spontaneous dissection in another artery within a few days after the initial event. Because of the susceptibility to recurrent spontaneous dissections we propose at least one week of observation in hospital. Further, we will elaborate on the possible conservative and invasive treatment strategies in the acute phase of SCAD. Primary percutaneous coronary intervention remains the reperfusion strategy of choice; however, in small and medium-sized arteries with normalised flow conservative treatment is defendable. In addition, after the acute phase evaluation of possible underlying diseases is necessary, because it affects further treatment. (Neth Heart J 2008;16:344-9.).


atherosclerosis; connective tissue disorder; peripartum episode; recurrence; spontaneous coronary artery dissection

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