Usefulness of magnetic resonance imaging for the diagnosis of right ventricular dysplasia in children

Division of Cardiology, Department of Pediatrics, The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, The University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA.
The American Journal of Cardiology (Impact Factor: 3.43). 05/2006; 97(8):1232-7. DOI: 10.1016/j.amjcard.2005.11.045
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR) has been helpful in adults in the diagnosis of arrhythmogenic right ventricular dysplasia. Short of direct surgical observation or autopsy, no gold standard exists. CMR diagnostic criteria include right atrial and ventricular dilation, regional right ventricular (RV) wall motion abnormalities, outflow tract ectasia, and myocardial fatty infiltration. To determine whether adult diagnostic criteria are useful in children referred for CMR for this diagnosis, the images and records of 81 patients (aged 11.5 +/- 5.5 years) over an 8-year period were reviewed. Histories included ventricular tachycardia, palpitations, dilated right ventricle, syncope, near sudden death, or family history of RV dysplasia. Four families were studied with parents who had RV dysplasia diagnosed by surgery, explanted heart, or CMR. CMR imaging included T1-weighted imaging, cine, 1-dimensional RV myocardial tagging, and phase-encoded velocity mapping, and 2 patients underwent delayed-enhancement CMR. Only 1 of the 81 patients met 5 of the criteria. None of the others met >2 of the criteria, and only 2 patients met 1 or 2 criteria. For questionable regional wall motion abnormalities, RV myocardial tagging was helpful. In conclusion, CMR of patients with a history suspicious for the diagnosis of RV dysplasia is a low-yield test in children. This may be due to the evolving nature of the disease, which does not manifest itself from a morphologic or ventricular-function standpoint until later in development. Follow-up studies as patients age may be advantageous.