Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Rejected hearts now viable for transplantation after stress echo

05.12.2012
Pharmacological stress echo identifies donor hearts that would historically have been rejected

Hearts previously rejected due to donors' age or other risk factors can now be declared viable for transplantation using pharmacological stress echo, according to research presented at EUROECHO and other Imaging Modalities 2012. The study1 was presented by Dr Tonino Bombardini from Pisa, Italy.

EUROECHO and other Imaging Modalities 2012 is the annual meeting of the European Association of Cardiovascular Imaging (EACVI)2, a registered branch of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC)3. It takes place 5-8 December in Athens, Greece, at the Megaron Athens International Conference Centre.

Heart transplantation is an established procedure in patients with end-stage heart failure but it is limited by a severe donor organ shortage. The average age of organ donors has increased and the donor is frequently a patient who died of a stroke. Every year in Europe a pool of ˜4,500 hearts for which permission has been granted for heart donation are unused4. "Many of these hearts could be used if we could increase confidence that the transplantation would be successful," said Dr Bombardini, who is scientific coordinator of the Aged Donor Heart Rescue by Stress Echo (ADONHERS) Project.

"Currently, the use of hearts from donors = 50 years (of the total transplanted hearts) is just 21% in Europe and 12% in North America," he added. "But the lengthening of waiting lists for heart transplantation is a significant healthcare emergency and as a consequence, the criteria for acceptance of donor hearts have been expanded to include donors over the age of 55 years."5

Dr Bombardini continued: "Despite the expanded criteria, clinicians are hesitant to use hearts from older donors. The use of stress echocardiography to select hearts 'too good to die' may be a possible approach to resolving the mismatch between organ supply and demand."

During 2005 to 2012, the ADONHERS Project included 66 candidate heart donors who would previously not have been considered due to their age or other risk factors. The average age of candidate donors was 55 years. After a legal declaration of brain death, 47 donors were still considered eligible and underwent dipyridamole (n=44) or dobutamine (n=3) stress echocardiography to look for coronary artery disease or cardiomyopathy abnormalities.

The researchers found 35 hearts without heart disease that were therefore eligible for transplantation. For six of these hearts, a matching recipient could not be found and a cardiac autopsy verified the absence of significant coronary artery disease or cardiomyopathy abnormalities.

The remaining 29 eligible hearts were successfully transplanted in emergency recipients. At 1 month, 26 patients had normal heart structure and function as assessed by angiography, intravascular ultrasound, hemodynamic tests and ventriculography. Three patients had minor single vessel disease.

After a median follow up of 27 months, 26 patients had survived and 3 had died (from general sepsis, neoplasia and recurrent multiple myeloma).

Dr Bombardini said: "An upward shift of the donor age cut-off limit from the present 55 to 65 years is acceptable if a stress echocardiography screening on the candidate donor heart is normal."

He added: "Pharmacological stress echo is inexpensive and allows a simultaneous evaluation of inducible ischemia and contractile reserve of the left ventricle – therefore, it is capable of unmasking prognostically meaningful occult coronary artery disease or cardiomyopathy."

Dr Bombardini concluded: "Pharmacological stress echo is already an established technique that is used to assess and risk stratify patients with known or suspected coronary artery disease. We have shown that it can also be used to identify hearts suitable for transplantation that would previously have been unused. This requires cardiologists with experience of stress echo and ideally a second opinion from a cardiologist in a core lab (using tele-echocardiography), who can give the green light for donation."

In addition to the above research, Dr Bombardini's group will present two further abstracts on this topic at EUROECHO 20126, 7.

Notes to editor

1 Favorable short-term outcome of transplanted hearts selected from marginal donors by pharmacological stress echocardiography (abstract 50125)

2 About the European Association of Cardiovascular Imaging (EACVI)

The European Association of Cardiovascular Imaging (EACVI) is a registered branch of the ESC. Its aim is to promote excellence in clinical diagnosis, research, technical development and education in cardiovascular ultrasound and other imaging modalities in Europe. It was formerly called the European Association of Echocardiography (EAE).

3 About the European Society of Cardiology (ESC)

The European Society of Cardiology (ESC) represents more than 75,000 cardiology professionals across Europe and the Mediterranean. Its mission is to reduce the burden of cardiovascular disease in Europe.

4 Council of Europe, Donation and Transplantation, 2011

5 The International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation (ISHLT) guidelines for the care of heart transplant recipients recently recommended that the use of donor hearts > 55 years should only be used if the survival benefit of heart transplantation for a recipient unequivocally exceeds the decrement in early heart transplantation survival due to transplantation of a heart with limited myocardial reserves.

6 Wait, treat and see: echocardiographic monitoring of brain-dead potential donors with stunned heart (abstract 50250)

7 Second-opinion stress tele-echocardiography for the Adonhers (aged donor heart rescue by stress echo) project (abstract 50123)

Information for journalists attending EUROECHO and other Imaging Modalities 2012

EUROECHO and other Imaging Modalities 2012 takes place during 5-8 December in Athens, Greece, at the Megaron Athens International Conference Centre. The full scientific programme is available here http://spo.escardio.org/default.aspx?eevtid=55&hit=highlight-on

Registration is possible onsite, with a valid press card, assignment letter or three bylined articles and signed Embargo form.

A press working area will be available on the exhibition lower level (Level -1). Follow the Speakers Service Centre/Press Working Area signage. There will be no press conference, but a press kit will be available and a press coordinator onsite will assist the media with any EUROECHO and other Imaging Modalities 2012 spokespersons enquiries.

Authors:

ESC Press Office
Tel: On site at Athens: +33 6 22 41 84 92
Tel: +33 (0) 4 92 94 8627
Tel: +33 (0) 4 92 94 7756
Email: press@escardio.org

ESC Press Office | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.escardio.org

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Collagen nanofibrils in mammalian tissues get stronger with exercise
14.12.2018 | University of Illinois College of Engineering

nachricht New discoveries predict ability to forecast dementia from single molecule
12.12.2018 | UT Southwestern Medical Center

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Data use draining your battery? Tiny device to speed up memory while also saving power

The more objects we make "smart," from watches to entire buildings, the greater the need for these devices to store and retrieve massive amounts of data quickly without consuming too much power.

Millions of new memory cells could be part of a computer chip and provide that speed and energy savings, thanks to the discovery of a previously unobserved...

Im Focus: An energy-efficient way to stay warm: Sew high-tech heating patches to your clothes

Personal patches could reduce energy waste in buildings, Rutgers-led study says

What if, instead of turning up the thermostat, you could warm up with high-tech, flexible patches sewn into your clothes - while significantly reducing your...

Im Focus: Lethal combination: Drug cocktail turns off the juice to cancer cells

A widely used diabetes medication combined with an antihypertensive drug specifically inhibits tumor growth – this was discovered by researchers from the University of Basel’s Biozentrum two years ago. In a follow-up study, recently published in “Cell Reports”, the scientists report that this drug cocktail induces cancer cell death by switching off their energy supply.

The widely used anti-diabetes drug metformin not only reduces blood sugar but also has an anti-cancer effect. However, the metformin dose commonly used in the...

Im Focus: New Foldable Drone Flies through Narrow Holes in Rescue Missions

A research team from the University of Zurich has developed a new drone that can retract its propeller arms in flight and make itself small to fit through narrow gaps and holes. This is particularly useful when searching for victims of natural disasters.

Inspecting a damaged building after an earthquake or during a fire is exactly the kind of job that human rescuers would like drones to do for them. A flying...

Im Focus: Topological material switched off and on for the first time

Key advance for future topological transistors

Over the last decade, there has been much excitement about the discovery, recognised by the Nobel Prize in Physics only two years ago, that there are two types...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

ICTM Conference 2019: Digitization emerges as an engineering trend for turbomachinery construction

12.12.2018 | Event News

New Plastics Economy Investor Forum - Meeting Point for Innovations

10.12.2018 | Event News

EGU 2019 meeting: Media registration now open

06.12.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Data use draining your battery? Tiny device to speed up memory while also saving power

14.12.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Tangled magnetic fields power cosmic particle accelerators

14.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

In search of missing worlds, Hubble finds a fast evaporating exoplanet

14.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>