Abstract 2919: Do Premature Ventricular Contractions Play a Role in the Etiologic Subtypes of Ischemic Stroke?
Background The relationship between stroke and non-atrial fibrillation cardiac arrhythmias remains unclear. Frequent premature ventricular contractions (PVCs) are associated with impaired ventricular relaxation and may increase the risk of clot formation and subsequent embolization. This study investigated the relationship between frequency of PVCs and etiologic subtypes of ischemic stroke.
Methods Consecutive ischemic stroke patients admitted within 7 days of onset who underwent 24-hour Holter monitoring were enrolled (n=451). Subtypes of ischemic stroke were defined according to the SSS-TOAST classification as Large artery atherosclerosis (LAD), cardioembolic stroke (CE), small vessel occlusion (SVO), other causes (OC), and cryptogenic stroke (CS). Risk factors, demographic information, and 24-hour Holter recordings were compared between the subtypes of ischemic stroke.
Results There were 182 women and 269 men (191 LAD, 90 CE, 93 SVO, 13 OC, 64 CS), with a mean age of 66 years (median 68). PVCs were seen in 305 patients (67.5%) on 24-hour Holter monitoring (median 3, IQR 0-48). CE had a higher median number of PVCs (median 24, IQR 0-258) than LAD (median 2, p=0.01), SVO (median 1, p<0.001), OC (median 0, p=0.013), and CS (median 4, p=0.2). The proportions of frequent PVCs (>50 in a 24-hour Holter monitoring) were higher in CE (43.3%) compared with the other groups (20.9% in LAD, 15.1% in SVO, 15.4% in OC, and 23.4% in CS; p<0.001). Compared with the SVO, the upper 3 quartiles of PVCs were associated with CE (OR 2.93; 95% CI, 1.69 to 5.06) and CS (OR 1.86; 95% CI, 1.07 to 3.2) in ordinal logistic regression analysis after adjustment for traditional risk factors.
Conclusions The number of PVCs detected by 24-hour Holter monitoring is associated with CE and CS. The presence of high frequency of PVC may help in stratifying patients with different stroke subtypes, particularly embolic stroke. The role of these arrhythmias as a risk marker for ischemic stroke deserves further investigation.
- © 2012 by American Heart Association, Inc.