T-wave changes in patients with Wellens syndrome are associated with increased myocardial mechanical and electrical dispersion


Some patients with unstable angina and critical stenosis of the left anterior descending coronary artery (LAD) present with Wellens syndrome (WS), i.e., inverted or biphasic T-waves in the anterior precordial leads. We assessed clinical, angiographic, electro- and echocardiographic characteristic of patients with WS. In this retrospective study, clinical, angiographic, electro- and echocardiographic characteristic of 35 patients with WS were compared to 57 patients with critical LAD stenosis and normal resting electrocardiogram (ECG), and 45 subjects with normal coronary angiogram. QTc dispersion was measured from the 12-lead ECG as the difference between longest and shortest QTc intervals. Mechanical dispersion was defined as the time difference between the longest and shortest contraction durations which were measured as the time from the first deflection of the QRS complex to maximum myocardial shortening of each 18 segmental longitudinal strain curves derived by speckle tracking echocardiography. There were no significant differences in the complexity and location of the LAD lesion, anterograde and collateral flow in LAD and coronary artery dominance between patients with WS and normal ECG (P > 0.05, for all). Patients with WS had lower global longitudinal strain (GLS) and more pronounced both QTc and myocardial mechanical dispersion than patients with critical LAD stenosis and normal ECG, and control subjects (P < 0.05). T-wave changes in patients with WS are associated with more profound regional myocardial dysfunction and increased QTc and myocardial mechanical dispersion. Similar angiographic characteristics of the LAD lesion were seen in patients with WS and normal ECG.

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Correspondence to Ivan Stankovic.

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Stankovic, I., Kafedzic, S., Janicijevic, A. et al. T-wave changes in patients with Wellens syndrome are associated with increased myocardial mechanical and electrical dispersion. Int J Cardiovasc Imaging 33, 1541–1549 (2017).

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  • Wellens syndrome
  • QT dispersion
  • Mechanical dispersion
  • Strain imaging