Heart 99:548-555 doi:10.1136/heartjnl-2012-303305
  • Coronary artery disease
  • Original article

Effects of coronary sinus occlusion on myocardial ischaemia in humans: role of coronary collateral function

  1. Christian Seiler
  1. Department of Cardiology, University Hospital, Bern, Switzerland
  1. Correspondence to Professor Christian Seiler, Department of Cardiology, University Hospital, Bern CH-3010, Switzerland; christian.seiler{at}
  • Received 2 November 2012
  • Revised 18 December 2012
  • Accepted 19 December 2012
  • Published Online First 23 January 2013


Objective This study tested the hypotheses that intermittent coronary sinus occlusion (iCSO) reduces myocardial ischaemia, and that the amount of ischaemia reduction is related to coronary collateral function.

Design Prospective case-control study with intraindividual comparison of myocardial ischaemia during two 2-min coronary artery balloon occlusions with and without simultaneous iCSO by a balloon-tipped catheter.

Setting University Hospital.

Patients 35 patients with chronic stable coronary artery disease.

Intervention 2-min iCSO.

Main outcome measures Myocardial ischaemia as assessed by intracoronary (i.c.) ECG ST shift at 2 min of coronary artery balloon occlusion. Collateral flow index (CFI) without iCSO, that is, the ratio between mean distal coronary occlusive (Poccl) and mean aortic pressure (Pao) both minus central venous pressure.

Results I.c. ECG ST segment shift (elevation in all) at the end of the procedure with iCSO versus without iCSO was 1.33±1.25 mV versus 1.85±1.45 mV, p<0.0001. Regression analysis showed that the degree of i.c. ECG ST shift reduction during iCSO was related to CFI, best fitting a Lorentzian function (r2=0.61). Ischaemia reduction with iCSO was greatest at a CFI of 0.05–0.20, whereas in the low and high CFI range the effect of iCSO was absent.

Conclusions ICSO reduces myocardial ischaemia in patients with chronic coronary artery disease. Ischaemia reduction by iCSO depends on coronary collateral function. A minimal degree of collateral function is necessary to render iCSO effective. ICSO cannot manifest an effect when collateral function prevents ischaemia in the first place. Identifier NCT01625832.