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New System Devised To Guide Doctors Treating Patients With Symptomatic Myocardial Bridging
Date:7/1/2008

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"From medication management to angioplasty and bypass surgery, there are a number of therapies available for patients who have myocardial bridging. But there has been no universally accepted protocol to determine whether a patient with myocardial bridging requires therapy, or which option is best in each case," said Schwarz. "Our study was designed to evaluate the usefulness of several diagnostic tests and to provide guidelines for doctors choosing the most appropriate treatments for their patients."

The retrospective study included 157 patients who had myocardial bridging (MB) and no evidence of other heart disease or coronary artery disease. This is believed to be the largest group of MB patients in the literature and - with a five-year follow-up - the longest observation period described in the medical literature. Another 100 patients without MB, artery disease or other heart disease made up a control group.

The researchers reviewed the patients' clinical histories for symptoms of typical angina (chest pain during stress with relief at rest); atypical angina (non-exertional chest pain); non-specific symptoms, such as palpitations and fatigue; or no symptoms. They evaluated results from non-invasive tests, such as EKGs,exercise stress tests or nuclear SPECT scans (Thallium 201 scintigraphy in single photon emission computer tomography), angiograms and invasive tests measuring different hemodynami
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