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Summary

Since 1994, alcohol septal ablation (ASA) has been used as a minimally invasive treatment of patients with hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy, resistant to conservative medical therapy. This catheter-based intervention consists of injecting absolute alcohol in a septal perforator to induce infarction of the hypertrophied septum and thus diminish the left ventricle outflow tract obstruction. This reduction of the gradient is associated with reduction of symptoms and left ventricle remodeling. The procedure was improved after the introduction of myocardial contrast echocardiography for visualization of the area at risk of infarction and reduction of the alcohol amount. Major complications of ASA are rare but centers with experience have reported conduction disorders - about 10% of patients needed permanent pacing because of complete AV block. Large randomized prospective studies have not yet compared alcohol septal ablation to the gold standard for treatment of hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy - surgical myomectomy.

Abstract

Introduction. Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is a disease with increased left ventricular (LV) wall thickness not solely explained by abnormal loading conditions, with great heterogeneity regarding clinical expression and prognosis. The aim of the present study was to collect data on HCM patients from different centres across the country, in order to assess the general characteristics and therapeutic choices in this population.

Methods. Between December 2014 and April 2017, 210 patients from 11 Romanian Cardiology centres were enrolled in the National Registry of HCM. All patients had to fulfil the diagnosis criteria for HCM according to the European Society of Cardiology guidelines. Clinical, electrocardiographic, imaging and therapeutic characteristics were included in a predesigned online file.

Results. Median age at enrolment was 55 ± 15 years with male predominance (60%). 43.6% of the patients had obstructive HCM, 50% non-obstructive HCM, while 6.4% had an apical pattern. Maximal wall thickness was 20.3 ± 4.8 mm (limits 15-37 mm) while LV ejection fraction was 60 ± 8%. Heart failure symptoms dominated the clinical picture, mainly NYHA functional class II (51.4%). Most frequent arrhythmias were atrial fibrillation (28.1%) and non-sustained ventricular tachycardia (19.9%). Mean sudden cardiac death risk score (SCD-RS) was 3.0 ± 2.3%, with 10.4% of the patients with high risk of SCD. However, only 5.7% received an ICD. Patients were mainly treated with beta-blockers (72.9%), diuretics (28.1%) and oral anticoagulants (28.6%). Invasive treatment of LVOT obstruction was performed in a small number of patients: 22 received myomectomy and 13 septal ablation. Cardiac magnetic resonance was reported in only 14 patients (6.6%).

Conclusions. The Romanian registry of HCM illustrates patient characteristics at a national level as well as the gaps in management which need improvement – accessibility to high-end diagnostic tests and invasive methods of treatment.

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through all the stressful procedures or events they underwent As we found later, the control group mothers did conceive spontaneously, but some after surgical treatment on the reproductive tract (1 myomectomy, 3 resections of the septum, and 4 surgeries on ovaries). These women might have carried some of the characteristics of IVF mothers. Namely, the inclusion criterion depended on the mode of conception: either IVF or spontaneous, whereas the anamnestic questionnaire was more specific about conception problems. Interestingly, 8.2% of IVF mothers reported sexual