Hypereosinophilic syndrome: considerations for the cardiologist

Link to article at PubMed

Heart. 2021 Jun 25:heartjnl-2020-317202. doi: 10.1136/heartjnl-2020-317202. Online ahead of print.


Eosinophil-mediated endomyocardial damage is a well-known complication in patients with hypereosinophilic syndromes (HES). Although management and survival have improved significantly, some patients continue to develop severe cardiomyopathy as a direct consequence of uncontrolled hypereosinophilia. Cardiologists play a key role in early detection and treatment. At the early generally asymptomatic stage, related to subendocardial eosinophilic infiltrates, elevation of the biomarker of cardiac damage (serum troponin) and cardiac MRI are the best tools for diagnosis. As disease progresses, patients typically develop intracardiac mural thrombi and may experience variable degrees of heart failure due to valve damage and/or subendocardial fibrosis, all of which are more readily detectable with traditional echocardiographic investigation. New imaging modalities such as strain imaging and specific sequences in MRI offer the perspective of detecting subtle perturbations and distinguishing inflammatory versus fibrotic stages. Endomyocardial biopsy may help in difficult settings, namely, when blood eosinophilia is not prominent, but may be non-contributive due to sampling issues or eosinophil degranulation or replacement by fibrosis, and must always be performed after careful consideration of the risk:benefit ratio. Although treatment of the HES itself should be managed by clinicians with expertise in this rare disorder with the aim of lowering eosinophil counts to prevent and treat eosinophil-mediated organ damage and dysfunction, cardiologists play a key role in managing the associated cardiopathy. There are no consensual disease-specific guidelines for treating eosinophil-mediated thrombotic complications and cardiopathy, which should be managed according to classical international recommendations.

PMID:34172539 | DOI:10.1136/heartjnl-2020-317202

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