Isolated stenosis of left anterior descending or right coronary artery: Relation between site of stenosis and ventricular dysfunction and therapeutic implications

Andrew G. Kumpuris, Miguel A. Quiñones, Donna Kanon, Richard R. Miller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Indications for coronary arterial bypass surgery in single vessel coronary artery disease are unresolved. To determine the extent of myocardium at risk with stenosis (70 percent or more) of a single coronary artery, left ventricular angiograms of 200 patients with stenosis confined to either the left anterior descending or right coronary artery and of 15 normal control subjects were assessed. Among patients without myocardial infarction, ejection fraction was unchanged (p > 0.05 versus normal values) in (1) those with stenosis of the proximal (above first septal branch, n = 19), mid (between septal and first diagonal branches, n = 14) and distal (within 2 cm distal to diagonal branch, n = 15) left anterior descending coronary artery, and (2) those with stenosis of the proximal (above acute marginal branch, n = 16) and distal (between acute marginal and posterior descending branches, n = 16) right coronary artery. In contrast, ejection fraction was depressed (p < 0.001 versus normal values) In left anterior descending arterial stenosis with anterior myocardial Infarction: proximal (38 ± 10 percent, n = 33), mid (46 ± 12 percent, n = 24; p < 0.01 versus proximal), and distal (56 ± 9 percent, n = 15; p < 0.01 versus mid). Ejection fraction was similar with proximal and distal stenosis of the right coronary artery and inferior Infarction: 54 ± 11 percent versus 55 ± 9 percent, p > 0.05; both p < 0.05 versus normal value. Shortening velocity was assessed in three anterior (I to III, base to apex) and three inferior (IV to VI, apex to base) equidistant hemichords perpendicular to the long axis, 30 ° right anterior oblique view. With anterior Infarction and left anterior descending stenosis, shortening of hemichords I to V, I to IV and II to III with proximal, mid and distal stenosis, respectively, was depressed (p < 0.05 versus normal value). Septal excursion and thickening on M mode echocardiography with proximal left anterior descending stenosis and infarction were depressed (p < 0.05 versus mid and distal stenosis with infarcts). Hemichordal shortening with Inferior infarction was similarly depressed (p > 0.05) with proximal and distal stenoses. In conclusion, stenosis of the left anterior descending coronary artery is a heterogenous disease, the extent of jeopardized myocardium is highly dependent on the site of stenosis, and the criteria for surgery cannot be applied uniformly. When the surgical goal is myocardial preservation, these data provide an objective rationale for bypass of stenosis of the proximal left anterior descending coronary artery. In stenosis confined to the right coronary artery, left ventricular preservation alone should not be considered an indication for coronary bypass grafting.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)13-20
Number of pages8
JournalThe American Journal of Cardiology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 1980

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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