Background: Although recent reports showed that left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) is a prognostic factor in patients with cardiac sarcoidosis (CS), advances in diagnostic imaging have enabled us to detect CS patients with preserved LVEF in the early stage of the disorder. In the present study, we examined the prognosis and risk stratification in CS patients with preserved LVEF. Methods and results: We retrospectively examined 91 consecutive CS patients at our hospital from October 1998 to December 2015 (age, 57 ± 11 years; male/female, 25/66) for the relationship between LVEF and major adverse cardiac events (MACE), including ventricular tachycardia and fibrillation (VT/VF), heart failure (HF) admission, complete atrioventricular block, and all-cause death. CS patients with preserved LVEF (≥50%), as compared with those with reduced LVEF (<50%), showed significantly higher survival free from total MACE or VT/VF (log-rank p < 0.001) and significantly smaller LV myocardial damaged area as evaluated by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) (p < 0.001). Although CS patients with preserved LVEF had a good prognosis in general, persistent right ventricular (RV) pacing and reduced EF were significant predictors for MACE after 1 year from introduction of steroid therapy (hazard ratio, 5.25; 95% confidence interval, 1.31–22.50, p = 0.020, hazard ratio, 9.01; 95% confidence interval, 2.45–72.09; p = 0.001). Patients with the 2 factors (LVEF reduction rate >13.9% per year and persistent RV pacing) had significantly higher risk for MACE, compared with those without them (log-rank p < 0.001). Conclusion: The present study demonstrates that CS patients with preserved LVEF have better long-term prognosis than those with reduced LVEF in general. However, we should carefully follow them up, since chronological reduction in LVEF and persistent RV pacing could predict worse prognosis in those patients.
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