Electrocardiographic Changes Predict Angiographic Vasospasm After Aneurysmal Subarachnoid Hemorrhage
Background and Purpose—Early identification of patients at risk of angiographic vasospasm after aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) may mitigate its sequelae. One mechanism that may contribute to angiographic vasospasm is increased central sympathetic activity, which is also thought to cause electrocardiographic (ECG) changes after SAH. Here, we perform the first study to determine the association between ECG changes and angiographic vasospasm after SAH.
Methods—Exploratory analysis was performed on 413 patients from CONSCIOUS-1, a prospective randomized trial of clazosentan for the prevention of angiographic vasospasm. ECGs were obtained within 24 hours of aneurysm rupture and during the vasospasm risk period. Angiographic vasospasm was assessed using catheter angiography at baseline and 7 to 11 days after SAH. Multivariate logistic regression was used to identify significant associations.
Results—The most prevalent finding on ECG both immediately following SAH and during the vasospasm risk period was QT prolongation (42% and 25%, respectively). A prolonged QT interval and tachycardia on the baseline ECG were associated with angiographic vasospasm (OR, 1.86; 95% CI, 1.00–3.45; and OR, 10.83; 95% CI, 1.17–100.50, respectively). QT prolongation on ECG during the vasospasm risk period was also associated with angiographic vasospasm (OR, 3.53; 95% CI, 1.67–7.39). No ECG findings were associated with delayed ischemic neurological deficit, but tachycardia and ST changes were associated with worse clinical outcome.
Conclusions—QT prolongation and tachycardia on ECG were independently associated with angiographic vasospasm after aneurysmal SAH on multivariate analysis.
- Received April 3, 2012.
- Accepted April 30, 2012.
- © 2012 American Heart Association, Inc.