Myocardial ischemia in hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is associated with poor outcomes. Vasodilator stress cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR) can detect and quantitate inducible ischemia in HCM patients. We hypothesized that myocardial ischemia assessed by CMR is associated with myocardial fibrosis and reduced exercise capacity in HCM. In 105 consecutive HCM patients, we performed quantitative assessment of left ventricular volume and mass, wall thickness, segmental wall thickening percent, segmental late Gadolinium enhancement (LGE), and extracellular volume fraction (ECV). Time-signal intensity curves of first pass perfusion sequences were generated for each segment at stress and rest. A myocardial perfusion reserve index (MPRI) (stress/rest slope) was calculated. Patients who underwent an echocardiographic (n = 73) and cardiopulmonary exercise test (n = 37) within 30 days were included. The mean age was 53.2 ± 15.4 years; 60% were male, and 82 patients had asymmetric hypertrophy. Segments with end diastolic thickness ≥ 1.2 cm had a higher burden of LGE (4.1% vs 0.5% per segment), reduced MPRI (2.6 ± 1.5 vs 3.1 ± 1.8) and reduced thickening percent (48.9 ± 41.7% vs. 105.3 ± 59.5%), (P < 0.0001 for all comparisons). Patients with ischemia (any segment with MPRI < 2) were more likely to have dynamic left ventricular outflow tract (LVOT) obstruction (63.3% vs 36.7%, P = 0.01), to be smokers (17% vs 6.9%, P = 0.04), and had a higher ECV (30% vs 28%, P = 0.04). The total LGE burden was similar between the two groups (P = 0.47). Increasing ischemia burden (number of segments with MPRI < 2) was associated with worsened ventilatory efficiency (VE/VCO2) (P < 0.001) but not peak oxygen consumption or anerobic threshold (P > 0.2). In a patient-level multivariable logistic regression model, only LVOT obstruction remained a significant predictor of ischemia burden (P = 0.03). Myocardial ischemia by CMR is associated with myocardial segmental dysfunction and interstitial fibrosis, as assessed by ECV, in HCM patients, even in segments free of LGE. Conversely, quantitative ischemia burden was not associated with replacement fibrosis as assessed by total LGE burden. Patients with ischemia had greater prevalence of dynamic LVOT obstruction; and in a subset of patients with cardiopulmonary exercise testing, ischemia burden was associated with worsened ventilatory efficiency.
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