Long-Term Survival After Right Ventricular Infarction

Published:October 23, 2006DOI:
      Right ventricular myocardial infarction (RVMI) is associated with substantial in-hospital and first-year mortality, but few published studies have documented late survival to 5 to 10 years after infarction. We retrospectively identified 69 consecutive patients from Olmsted County, Minnesota, with new RVMI diagnosed between January 1, 1988 and January 1, 1998, in whom coronary angiography was performed soon after admission. Long-term follow-up status was determined for all patients. RVMI secondary to isolated right coronary artery (RCA) disease had a 10-year actuarial survival of 62%, versus 52% for those with combined RCA and left coronary artery (LCA) disease (p = 0.21). Mortality within the first year after infarction was substantial for all patients with RVMI; however, there was a nonsignificant trend for patients with RCA disease (18%) versus those with RCA and LCA disease (27%; p = 0.21). Annual actuarial risks of death beyond the first year to 10 years after infarction were 2% per year for RCA disease and 3% for combined RCA and LCA disease. Patients with combined LCA and RCA disease were older (p = 0.01) but otherwise similar in baseline characteristics to patients with RCA disease. Occurrence of congestive heart failure, atrial fibrillation, and mechanical complications was similar in the 2 groups. In conclusion, RVMI is associated with substantial first-year mortality, which decreases to a much lower attrition rate between years 1 and 10, with no greater long-term mortality in those patients with concomitant LCA disease.
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