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Seminars in Cardiovascular Medicine

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Clinical and echocardiographic predictors of silent cerebral infarctions in patients with persistent atrial fibrillation

Oleg Sychov
  • Cardiac Arrhythmias Department of the SI NSC “M.D. Strazhesko Institute of Cardiology” NAMS of Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine
  • Other articles by this author:
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/ Artem Borodai
  • Corresponding author
  • Cardiac Arrhythmias Department of the SI NSC “M.D. Strazhesko Institute of Cardiology” NAMS of Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine
  • Email
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Svetlana Fedkiv
  • Department of Radiology of the SI NSC “M.D. Strazhesko Institute of Cardiology” NAMS of Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine
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/ Elina Borodai
  • Cardiac Arrhythmias Department of the SI NSC “M.D. Strazhesko Institute of Cardiology” NAMS of Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine
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  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Taisia Getman
  • Cardiac Arrhythmias Department of the SI NSC “M.D. Strazhesko Institute of Cardiology” NAMS of Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine
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  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Andrei Rybak
  • Department of Radiology of the SI NSC “M.D. Strazhesko Institute of Cardiology” NAMS of Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
Published Online: 2014-12-30 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/semcard-2014-0003


Aim. The aims of the study were to evaluate prevalence of silent cerebral infarctions (SCI) and determine their clinical and echocardiographic predictors in patients with atrial fibrillation (AF).

Patients and methods. In prospective cross sectional study we examined 134 patients with non-valvular AF. Clinical examination, laboratory tests, transoesophageal, transthoracic echocardiography and multislice computed tomography of the brain were performed for all patients. According to current guidelines, SCI was defined as imaging (≥3 mm) or neuropathological evidence of central nervous system infarction, without a history of acute neurological dysfunction attributable to the lesion.

Results. Silent cerebral infarctions were detected in 34.3% (n = 46) of patients, and infarctions ≥ 15 mm (mean diameter 31.3 mm) were detected in 11.2% (n = 15) of patients. Superficial SCIwere found in 12.7%and basal SCI in 21.6% of cases. In multivariate analysis low creatinine clearance < 90 ml/min was independently associated with small basal SCI (p = 0.04). In univariate analysis age ≥ 65 years was significantly associated with basal SCI, p = 0.004, but not with SCI ≥ 15 mm or superficial SCI. The results of multivariate analysis showed that CHA2DS2VASc score was an independent predictor of superficial SCI; low left atrial appendage velocity (LAAV) < 30 cm/s was independently associated both with SCI ≥ 15 mm (p = 0.03) and superficial SCI (p = 0.02).

Conclusions. Large and superficial SCI were significantly and independently associated with low LAAV < 30 cm/s and other echocardiographic embolic risk factors and in case of absence of significant large arteries atherosclerosis may be considered as those of cardiac origin. Small basal SCI were associated with age and low creatinine clearance < 90 ml/min which was their independent predictor. CHA2DS2VASc score is useful for assessment of risk of cerebral infarctions even those without history of acute symptoms

Keywords : atrial fibrillation; silent cerebral infarction; computed tomography; left atrial appendage


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About the article

Received: 2014-06-10

Accepted: 2014-10-01

Published Online: 2014-12-30

Published in Print: 2014-12-01

Citation Information: Seminars in Cardiovascular Medicine, Volume 20, Issue 2, Pages 10–17, ISSN (Online) 1822-7767, DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/semcard-2014-0003.

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© by Artem Borodai. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 3.0 License. BY-NC-ND 3.0

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