Inverted stress- induced cardiomyopathy as a unusual variant
Case presentation
A 36- year- old white woman at 40 week of gestation was admitted to hospital for elective repeated cesarean delivery. During caesarean delivery under spinal anaesthesia a previously healthy woman became hypotensive, requiring ephedrine to maintain her blood pressure. Three hours after delivery the patient presented acute heart failure and pulmonary oedema. Due to low blood pressure she demanded the administration of inotropic agents. Owing to respiratory failure and gradual deterioration of consciousness, mechanical ventilation was applied. Results of additional tests finally excluded pulmonary thromboembolism and acute coronary syndrome. The transthoracic echocardiography revealed severe left ventricular systolic dysfunction, ejection fraction 30 % with hypokinesis of the mid and basal segments of posterior, anterior and lateral wall with preserved contractility of the apical segments. The diagnosis of inverted stress- induced cardiomyopathy was set upon the overall clinical data. Both echocardiography and magnetic resonance imaging performed on the fifth day showed complete recovery of myocardial function. The patient was discharged after 15 days in good overall condition. At 12- month follow- up she remained asymptomatic with no echocardiographic abnormalities.

Inverted stress- induced cardiomyopathy may occur in postpartum period, especially in combination with spinal anesthesia and adrenergic stimulants administration. The clinical awareness and multimodality imaging of possible diagnosis and further management of this unexpected variant of acute heart failure after caesarean delivery is required....