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Medicina (Buenos Aires)

versión On-line ISSN 1669-9106


GULLONE, N. et al. Detección ecocardiográfica de alteraciones valvulares cardíacas en pacientes adictos a cocaína. Medicina (B. Aires) [online]. 2003, vol.63, n.6, pp. 711-714. ISSN 1669-9106.

Intravenous drug-addiction is one of the susceptible factors for the development of infectious endocarditis and cocaine, especially when administered intravenously, can produce damage at the level of the valvular endothelium. We have studied a group of cocaine addicts to evaluate the possible existence of valvular alterations. Ninety-eight patients, addicts to intravenous injection and/or nasal insufflation, have been studied with Doppler and echocardiography and they were compared with a non-addict group of fifty persons. Valvular lesions were defined as valvular enlarging and "beaded appearance" lesions. The average age of drug-addicts was 29.1 years (SD 8.31) with a maximum of 66 year and a minimum of 14 years. Ninety-three of them were males and forty-five of them admitted to be intravenous addicts. Twenty cases showed positive serology for HIV. All of them, except one, recognized having used the intravenous route. The control group was 27.78 years old (SD 3.49) and 96% were males. Valvular lesions were found in 22.45% of addicts while no one in the control group showed any lesion (p=0.0007). Lesions were significantly larger in the tricuspid valve (p=0.0004). No valvular dysfunction was detected in any of the studied cases. No differences have been noticed in valvular alterations among HIV infected patients with and without reactivity to the treatment. The prevalence of valvular affection considering the way of drug administration was significantly higher in patients with intravenous addiction compared to nasal insufflation addicts, 40% versus 7.5% (p=0.0001). A percentage of cocaine addicts here studied presented valvular alterations research being the tricuspid valve the most frequently involved. No significant valvular failure has been detected. The observed lesions could correspond to the anatomic substratum of an endocardic infection, frequently observed in intravenous drug-addicts with lesions, usually located in the tricuspid valve.

Palabras clave : Cocaine Valvular lesions; Infectious endocarditis.

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