Author + information
- Received April 21, 1987
- Revision received October 28, 1987
- Accepted November 11, 1987
- Published online April 1, 1988.
- Colomba Falcone, MD∗∗a∗b,
- Giuseppe Specchia, MD∗a∗b,
- Renato Rondanelli, MD†,
- Luigina Guasti, MD∗a∗b,
- Giovanna Corsico, MD†,
- Silvia Codega, MD∗a∗b and
- Carlo Montemartini, MD∗a∗b
- ↵∗Address for reprints: Colomba Falcone, MD, Divisione di Cardiologia, IRCCS, Policlinico S. Matteo, 27100 Pavia, Italy.
To verify whether beta-endorphin plasma levels influence the presence of anginal symptoms. 74 consecutive male patients were studied. All patients had previously documented coronary artery disease and reproducible exerciseinduced myocardial ischemia. Thirty-five patients (Group I) had a history of angina and reported anginal symptoms during exercise stress testing; 39 patients (Group II) were asymptomatic and had documented silent myocardial ischemia during exercise. Baseline beta-endorphin plasma levels were measured in blood ramples taken before exercise stress testing and analyzed by beta-endorphin-I125-RIA Kit-NEN (a radioimmunoassay method).
The mean baseline beta-eadorphin plasma level was 22.5 ± 19 pg/ml in patients with anginal symptoms compared with 43.7 ± 28 pg/ml in asymptomatic patients (p < 0.001). Baseline blood pressure and heart rate-systolic pressure (rate-pressure) product at baseline and at ischemia threshold (1 mm ST segment depression) were similar in the two groups, Group II patients had a longer exercise duration p < 0.01), more pronounced ST segment depression (p < 0.001) and a higher peak rate-pressure product (p < 0.01). The extent of coronary artery disease, ejection fraction and left ventricular end-diastolic pressure were similar in the two groups.
These data suggest that higher baseline bata-endorphin plasma levels may play a role in the decreased sensitevity to pain in patients with slient myocardial ischemia. In addition, different beta-endorphin levels can be associated with a different sensitivity to pain.
- Received April 21, 1987.
- Revision received October 28, 1987.
- Accepted November 11, 1987.