Author + information
- Received August 23, 1993
- Revision received November 8, 1993
- Accepted November 17, 1993
- Published online April 1, 1994.
- Miodrag Ostojic, MD, PhDa,
- Eugenio Picano, MD, PhD∗∗,
- Branko Beleslin, MDa,
- Ana Dordjevic-Dikic, MDa,
- Alessandro Distante, MD∗,
- Jelena Stepanovic, MDa,
- Barbara Reisenhofer, MD∗,
- Rade Babic, MDa,
- Sinisa Stojkovic, MDa,
- Milan Nedeljkovic, MDa,
- Goran Stankovic, MDa,
- Slavko Simeunovic, MD, PhDa and
- Vladimir Kanjuh, MD, PhDa
- ↵∗Address for correspondence: Dr. Eugenio Picano, CNR, Institute of Clinical Physiology, Via Paolo Savi, 8 56100 Pisa, Italy.
Objectives. This study was designed to assess the clinical, hemodynamic and diagnostic effects of the addition of dobutamine to dipyridamole echocardiography.
Background. Pharmacologic stress echocardiography with either dipyridamole or dobutamine has gained acceptance because of its safety, feasibility, diagnostic accuracy and prognostic power. The main limitation of the two tests is a less than ideal sensitivity in some patient subsets, such as those with limited coronary artery disease. We hypothesized that two pharmacologic stresses might act synergistically in the induction of ischemia by combining the mechanisms of inappropriate coronary vasodilation (with dipyridamole) and an increase in myocardial oxygen consumption (with dobutamine).
Methods. One hundred fifty patients (mean [±SD] age 51 ± 11 years) referred for stress echocardiography were initially studied by dipyridamole-dobutamine echocardiography. The test was stopped during the dipyridamole step in 95 patients for achievement of a predetermined end point (obvious dyssynergy induced by lower or higher dipyridamole dose), and dipyridamoledobutamine tests were performed in 55 patients (negative dipyridamole echocardiographic test). In the same 150 patients the dobutamine echocardiographic test (up to 40 μg/kg body weight per min) was performed on a separate day.
Results. Significant coronary artery disease (>50% diameter stenosis of at least one major coronary vessel by quantitative coronary arteriography) was present in 131 patients (one vessel in 115; two vessels in 10, three vessels in 6), with normal coronary arteriography in 19. The feasibility of the dipyridamoledobutamine test was 96%. Self-limiting side effects occurred in 5% of patients. The peak rate-pressure product was lowest during the dipyridamole test (132 ± 30) and was comparable during the dobutamine (186 ± 59) and dipyridamole-dobutamine tests (179 ± 45, p = NS vs. dobutamine; p < 0.01 vs. dipyridamole). Sensitivity was 71% for dipyridamole, 75% for dobutamine and 92% for dipyridamole-dobutamine echocardiography (dipyridamole vs. dipyridamole-dobutamine, p < 0.01; dobutamine vs. dipyridamole-dobutamine, p < 0.01; dipyridamole vs. dobutamine, p = NS), whereas specificity was 89% for dipyridamole, 79% for dobutamine and 89% for dipyridamole-dobutamine echocardiography (p = NS for all).
Conclusions. Routine dobutamine addition to dipyridamole stress testing is clinically useful and well tolerated. It expands the spectrum of the disease detectable by pharmacologic stress echocardiography and allows documentation of milder forms of coronary artery disease that can be missed by conventional dipyridamole or dobutamine stress echocardiography.
- Received August 23, 1993.
- Revision received November 8, 1993.
- Accepted November 17, 1993.