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Eur J Heart Fail. 2007 Apr;9(4):403-8. Epub 2006 Dec 12.

Myocardial viability estimation during the recovery phase of stress echocardiography after acute beta-blocker administration.

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Department of Cardiology, Erasmus MC, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.



Myocardial viability assessment in severely dysfunctional segments by dobutamine stress echocardiography (DSE) is less sensitive than nuclear scanning.


To assess the additional value of using the recovery phase of DSE after acute beta-blocker administration for identifying viable myocardium.


The study included 49 consecutive patients with ejection fraction (LVEF)<or=35%. All patients underwent DSE evaluation at low-high dose and during recovery phase, and dual-isotope single photon emission tomography (DISA-SPECT) evaluation for viability of severely dysfunctional segments. Patients with >or=4 viable segments were considered viable. Coronary revascularization followed within 3 months in all patients. Radionuclide evaluation of LVEF was performed before and 12 months after revascularization.


Viability with DISA-SPECT was detected in 463 (59%) segments, while 154 (19.7%) segments presented as scar. The number of viable segments increased from 415 (53%) at DSE to 463 (59%) at DSE and recovery, and the number of viable patients increased from 43 to 49 respectively. LVEF improved by >or=5% in 27 patients. Multivariate regression analysis showed that, DSE with recovery phase was the only independent predictor of >or=5% LVEF improvement after revascularization (OR 14.6, CI 1.4-133.7).


In this study, we demonstrate that the recovery phase of DSE has an increased sensitivity for viability estimation compared to low-high dose DSE.

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