Women have been considered to be at higher risk of complications relating to percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty
(PTCA) than are men. One reason for this sex
-related difference could be the ischemic response of myocardium during the procedure.
To investigate whether there are sex
-related differences in ischemic response of myocardium during elective PTCA.
Consecutive patients (n
= 192, of whom 48 were women), were subjected to vectorcardiography
during the PTCA procedure. Vectorcardiographic variables, magnitude of ST-segment vector (ST-VM), and magnitude of ST-segment vector change (STC-VM) were studied.
Women were older (63 ± 10 versus 56 ± 10 years, P
< 0.001) than men in our study and more often had diabetes mellitus and hypertension. Women less often had stents implanted (24 versus 50%, P
< 0.01) and they were subjected to fewer balloon inflations (P
< 0.001), with a total inflation time shorter than that for men (P
< 0.001). Maximum STC-VM was 25% greater for women (P
< 0.05). Women reported greater maximum pain (P
< 0.05) and nitroglycerine was more frequently used for them during PTCA (P
< 0.05). Occurrence of episodes of residual ischemic STC-VM (the difference between total number of episodes and number of balloon inflations) was more common for women (3 ± 5 versus 1 ± 3, P
< 0.01). Duration of residual ischemic STC-VM episodes (the difference between total duration of episodes and duration of balloon inflations) was longer for women than it was for men (242 ± 275 versus 148 ± 233 s, P
< 0.05). In a stepwise multivariate analysis and for a matched case-control group, episodes of residual STC-VM and duration of residual STC-VM episodes still indicated that there was an independent sex
-related difference (P
< 0.01 and P
< 0.01, respectively).
Women more commonly develop vectorcardiographic signs of severe myocardial ischemia
, more frequently experience episodes of ischemia
and report more severe angina pectoris during elective PTCA than do men.