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Open Access Highly Accessed Case Report

Isolated hypoplastic circumflex coronary artery: a rare cause of haemorrhagic myocardial infarction in a young athlete

Florian-Nikolaus Riede1, Stefan Bulla2, Sebastian Grundmann3, Martin Werner4, Urs-Nikolaus Riede4 and Claudia Otto4*

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Cardiology, University Hospital Basel, Petersgraben 3, CH-4031 Basel, Switzerland

2 Department of Diagnostic Radiology, University Hospital Freiburg, i. Br., Hugstetterstr. 55, D-79106 Freiburg i. Br., Germany

3 Department of Internal Medicine, University Hospital Freiburg, i. Br., Hugstetterstr. 55, D-79106 Freiburg i. Br., Germany

4 Department of Pathology, University Hospital Freiburg, i. Br., Breisacherstr. 115a, D-79106 Freiburg i. Br., Germany

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Diagnostic Pathology 2013, 8:91  doi:10.1186/1746-1596-8-91

Published: 6 June 2013

Abstract

Hypoplastic coronary artery disease is a rare condition that may lead to myocardial infarction and sudden death. Here we describe for the first time an isolated hypoplasia of the left circumflex artery (LCX). An otherwise healthy and athletically active 16-year-old boy was admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU) after out-of-hospital cardiac arrest. He died 12 hours after the initial event. Autopsy revealed an isolated hypoplastic LCX and acute haemorrhagic infarction in the posterolateral myocardium. The existence of isolated hypoplasia of the LCX challenges our understanding of coronary artery development.

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Keywords:
Isolated hypoplasia of the left circumflex artery; Myocardial haemorrhagic infarction; Sudden death in young athletes; Coronary artery development