Diagonosis and Treatment in article1999

 1999 Apr;54(2):71-6.

Prinzmetal's variant angina: three case reports and a review of the literature.



Prinzmetal's variant angina is a rare entity. When angina-like symptoms occur at rest, mostly at a specific hour in the early morning, together with transient ST segment elevations and angiographically normal arteries, provocative tests with ergonovine or acetylcholine should be performed. Endothelial dysfunction, a strong thrombotic tendency, an increased platelet aggregation together with changes in autonomic tone can trigger coronary vasospasms. Once treated with calcium antagonists and nitrates the prognosis is excellent and severe complications such as arrhythmias, myocardial infarction or sudden death are extremely rare. Coronary stenting can be useful for refractory coronary spasm, CABG can be used for important coronary atherosclerosis. This review is illustrated with three typical presentations of variant angina: a myocardial infarction without significant organic coronary atherosclerosis, an ergonovine-induced coronary spasm with a non-significant coronary lesion and a multivessel spasm complicated by ventricular arrhythmia. All these three patients became asymptomatic after a treatment with calcium antagonists and nitrates.