Short-term adverse remodeling progression in asymptomatic aortic stenosis
Objectives: Aortic stenosis (AS) is characterised by a long and variable asymptomatic course. Our objective was to use cardiovascular magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to assess progression of adverse remodeling in asymptomatic AS. Methods: Participants from the PRIMID-AS study, a prospective, multi-centre observational study of asymptomatic patients with moderate to severe AS, who remained asymptomatic at 12 months, were invited to undergo a repeat cardiac MRI. Results: Forty-three participants with moderate-severe AS (mean age 64.4 ± 14.8 years, 83.4% male, aortic valve area index 0.54 ± 0.15 cm2/m2) were included. There was small but significant increase in indexed left ventricular (LV) (90.7 ± 22.0 to 94.5 ± 23.1 ml/m2, p = 0.007) and left atrial volumes (52.9 ± 11.3 to 58.6 ± 13.6 ml/m2, p < 0.001), with a decrease in systolic (LV ejection fraction 57.9 ± 4.6 to 55.6 ± 4.1%, p = 0.001) and diastolic (longitudinal diastolic strain rate 1.06 ± 0.2 to 0.99 ± 0.2 1/s, p = 0.026) function, but no overall change in LV mass or mass/volume. Late gadolinium enhancement increased (2.02 to 4.26 g, p < 0.001) but markers of diffuse interstitial fibrosis did not change significantly (extracellular volume index 12.9 [11.4, 17.0] ml/m2 to 13.3 [11.1, 15.1] ml/m2, p = 0.689). There was also a significant increase in the levels of NT-proBNP (43.6 [13.45, 137.08] pg/ml to 53.4 [19.14, 202.20] pg/ml, p = 0.001). Conclusions: There is progression in cardiac remodeling with increasing scar burden even in asymptomatic AS. Given the lack of reversibility of LGE post-AVR and its association with long-term mortality post-AVR, this suggests the potential need for earlier intervention, before the accumulation of LGE, to improve the long-term outcomes in AS. Key points: • Current guidelines recommend waiting until symptom onset before valve replacement in severe AS. • MRI showed clear progression in cardiac remodeling over 12 months in asymptomatic patients with AS, with near doubling in LGE. • This highlights the need for potentially earlier intervention or better risk stratification in AS.
- Specialist Medicine