Athens QRS score as a predictor of coronary artery disease in patients with chest pain and normal exercise stress test

Raza Alvi, Eduard Sklyar, Robert Gorski, Moustapha Atoui, Maryam Afshar, Jonathan N. Bella

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Background-The diagnostic value of the Athens QRS score to detect obstructive coronary artery disease CAD in patients with otherwise normal exercise stress test remains unclear. Methods and Results-We analyzed 458 patients who underwent exercise stress test with or without myocardial perfusion imaging within 2 months of coronary angiography from 2008 to 2011. Patients (n=173) with abnormal stress test based on ST segment criteria were excluded. The Athens QRS score ≤5 was defined as abnormal. In our study cohort, 285 patients met the inclusion criteria and were divided into 2 groups: Low Athens QRS score (LQRS, n=56), with QRS score ≤5 and normal Athens QRS score normal Athens QRS score, n=229), with QRS score > 5. The presence of single-vessel and multivessel obstructive CAD was higher in LQRS than in normal Athens QRS score patients (47% versus 7.5% and 30% versus 3.8%, respectively, all P < 0.001). Logistic regression analysis showed that the likelihood of CAD was strongly and independently associated with LQRS (odds ratio=36.81, 95% CI: 10.77-120.47), diabetes (odds ratio=6.49, 95% CI: 2.41-17.49), lower maximum heart rate (odds ratio=0.92, 95% CI: 0.88-0.95, all P < 0.001), and older age (odds ratio=1.93, CI: 1.88-1.97, P=0.002). Conclusions-In a clinical cohort of patients with chest pain and normal exercise stress test, LQRS score is a strong independent predictor of presence of CAD. LQRS patients have a 6-fold higher prevalence of CAD and may warrant further evaluation even with reassuring exercise stress test.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere002832
JournalJournal of the American Heart Association
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2016


  • Coronary artery disease
  • Exercise stress test
  • QRS score


Dive into the research topics of 'Athens QRS score as a predictor of coronary artery disease in patients with chest pain and normal exercise stress test'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this