The noninvasive diagnosis of left ventricular aneurysm has markedly improved with gated blood pool scintigraphy. However, in patients with giant anterior ventricular aneurysms, the gated blood pool scintigram performed in two standard views (anterior and 40 degree left anterior oblique) may incorrectly suggest ischemic cardiomyopathy. We retrospectively identified five patients who underwent resection of a ventricular aneurysm over a 2 1 2 year period and who had preoperative scintigraphic studies that appeared to show severe diffuse left ventricular dysfunction. Contrast ventriculography demonstrated preserved wall motion in septal, inferior and lateral segments not seen by gated blood pool scintigraphy and showed extraordinarily large anterior aneurysms. M-mode or two-dimensional echocardiograms showed intact posterior wall function in all patients, suggesting severe regional myocardial disease rather than global dysfunction. Two-dimensional echocardiography showed additional segments with preserved function as well as discrete aneurysms in all patients. We conclude that gated blood pool scintigraphy, when performed in two standard views, may fail to correctly diagnose some patients with very large anterior wall aneurysms. M-mode echocardiography, two-dimensional echocardiography and additional scintigraphic views that visualize the posterior portions of the left ventricle improve noninvasive diagnosis of patients with resectable giant left ventricular aneurysms.
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