[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Primary amyloidosis (AL) is a systemic disease; however, there is limited information regarding the presence and character of vascular abnormalities.
Validated ultrasound techniques were used to prospectively determine carotid artery intimal-medial thickness (IMT) and brachial artery flow-mediated dilatation (FMD) in 59 consecutive AL patients and 17 age-similar, healthy, asymptomatic volunteers (CON). Carotid IMT was increased in AL when compared with CON (0.07 +/- 0.02 vs. 0.04 +/- 0.01 mm, P < 0.01). Similarly, brachial artery FMD was significantly lower in AL when compared with CON subjects (3 +/- 7 vs. 12 +/- 8%, P < 0.01). Multivariable analysis revealed that AL was associated with larger IMT and lower FMD after controlling for several confounding variables. However, within AL cases, there was not a significant association of cardiac vs. non-cardiac involvement with IMT or FMD (P = 0.1 and 0.2, respectively).
AL is associated with abnormal vascular morphology and endothelial dysfunction. Vascular abnormalities do not appear to be related to echocardiographic evidence of cardiac involvement.
European Heart Journal 04/2007; 28(8):1019-24. · 14.10 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We investigated the influence of > or =70% luminal coronary artery stenosis on regional diastolic deformation at rest using 2-dimensional strain echocardiography. We prospectively imaged patients during/within 24 hours of coronary angiography. Longitudinal systolic (SRs), early (SRe), and late diastolic strain rates, systolic, early, and late diastolic strain and times to isovolumic relaxation and peak SRe were measured in the 3 major vascular territories. Regions subtended by > or =70% coronary stenosis were labeled ischemic. Ischemic regions were compared with the same region in patients without significant coronary stenosis. Of 61 enrolled patients (38 men), 39 had > or =70% coronary stenosis (1 vessel in 14, 2 vessels in 15, 3 vessels in 10), and 15 had normal coronary arteries. There were no significant differences between the normal and ischemic groups with regard to age (59 +/- 13 vs 64 +/- 10 years, p = 0.20), clinical variables (dyslipidemia, smoking, diabetes), systolic (130 +/- 26 vs 139 +/- 31 mm Hg, p = 0.38) or diastolic (72 +/- 13 vs 72 +/- 11 mm Hg, p = 0.81) blood pressure and ejection fraction (58 +/- 12% vs 56 +/- 11%, p = 0.66). SRs and SRe were significantly decreased in ischemic compared with normal regions in all vascular distributions. SRs and SRe together (values below cutoff) or SRe alone were the most specific (93%) and SRe or SRs below cutoff the most sensitive (93%) parameters for detecting ischemic regions. In conclusion, analysis of regional deformation by 2-dimensional strain echocardiography enables detection of significantly diseased coronary arteries at rest. Altered diastolic deformation at rest identifies regions subtended by > or =70% coronary stenosis with high specificity.
The American Journal of Cardiology 01/2007; 98(12):1581-6. · 3.21 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To assess the safety and efficacy of echocardiographically guided pericardiocentesis for patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and hemodynamically significant pericardial effusion.
We identified 16 patients with RA who underwent 18 echocardiographically guided pericardiocentesis procedures at our institution over a 20-year period. Clinical and laboratory characteristics of the patients, response to treatment, complications, and need for future pericardial surgery were abstracted from the echocardiography database.
Ten patients were men and 6 were women (mean age, 62 yrs; range, 36-75 yrs). On average, patients were diagnosed with RA 11 years before pericardial disease developed. Twelve of 15 patients were seropositive for rheumatoid factor, 10 patients had radiographic evidence of erosions, and 7 patients had rheumatoid nodules. Cardiac tamponade was present in 11 of the 18 cases. Mean volume drained on the first pericardiocentesis was 504 +/- 264 ml (range 120-1000 ml). The fluid was an exudate with a mean protein concentration of 5 g/dl (range 3.3-51.1 g/dl). All cultures and cytologic findings were negative for bacteria and neoplastic cells. No serious complications resulted from echocardiographically guided pericardiocentesis. For 11 patients, a catheter was placed for intermittent drainage over an average of 3 days. Seven patients ultimately required a more definitive surgical procedure.
Echocardiographically guided pericardiocentesis is a safe and effective treatment for this uncommon but serious complication of RA.
The Journal of Rheumatology 12/2006; 33(11):2173-7. · 3.26 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Two-dimensional strain echocardiography (2D-SE) calculates tissue velocities via frame-to-frame tracking of unique acoustic markers within the image and provides strain parameters in two dimensions. Novel 2D-SE software allows semi-automated strain measurements and increased averaging capabilities optimizing signal-noise ratio.
We tested whether 2D-SE and the currently used and well-validated tissue Doppler derived strain echocardiography (TD-SE) yield similar information in the clinical setting.
We performed 2D-SE and TD-SE on 17 patients with amyloid cardiomyopathy and 10 age-matched healthy volunteers. Single walls from standard apical views (2- and 4-chamber) were acquired at high frame rates ( approximately 200fps). Offline analysis was performed by observers blinded to clinical data using the EchoPAC program with custom 2D-SE software. Longitudinal strain rate and strain from the basal, mid and apical segments of the septal and lateral walls were determined by each method (TD-SE and 2D-SE). Ejection fraction was >0.55 in healthy volunteers and ranged from 0.30 to 0.80 in cardiomyopathy group. A total of 54 walls (162 segments) were examined. Acceptable quality strain data was available in 92% and 85% segments by 2D-SE and TD-SE, respectively. Two-dimensional strain echocardiography values correlated closely with TD-SE values (r=0.94 and 0.96 for strain rate and strain, respectively).
Deformation analysis by 2D-SE is feasible in a clinical setting and 2D-SE values correlate closely with TD-SE measurements over a wide range of global systolic function. Two-dimensional strain echocardiography may help to facilitate the routine clinical implementation of deformation analysis.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We sought to determine whether the echocardiographic Doppler parameters of left ventricular diastolic dysfunction predict future heart failure (HF) events and, if so, which parameters best predict HF. We also examined whether the predictive ability of echocardiographic Doppler parameters was related to their prediction of left ventricular end-diastolic pressure (LVEDP). We studied patients who underwent cardiac catheterization and echocardiography performed within a 30-day period. The end point was HF, defined as new-onset or recurrent HF diagnosed by a physician and requiring the initiation or modification of treatment of HF. We identified 289 patients (mean age 63.5 +/- 12.6 years) with a mean follow-up of 10.9 +/- 10.2 months. A total of 24 HF events occurred. LVEDP was a significant predictor of HF univariately and independently in multiple regression models after adjustment for ejection fraction. In Cox models adjusted for age, gender, LVEDP, and ejection fraction, only the left atrial volume index and early mitral inflow to early diastolic tissue velocity (E/e') ratio remained predictive of HF. A multiple regression model, including all echocardiographic variables, showed a persistent, although attenuated, relation of early to late mitral inflow velocity (E/A) ratio and E/e' with LVEDP (p = 0.06 and p = 0.002, respectively). The addition of E/e' or the left atrial volume indexed to body surface area, but not E/A, to the clinical history and left ventricular ejection fraction provided incremental prognostic information. A LVEDP of > or =20 mm Hg, E/e' ratio of > or =15, and left atrial volume index of > or =23 ml/m(2) identified those with a higher risk of HF. In conclusion, invasively determined LVEDP is an independent predictor of future HF events. E/e' and the left atrial volume indexed to body surface area are the best independent predictors of future HF and provide prognostic information incremental to the clinical history and left ventricular ejection fraction.
The American Journal of Cardiology 03/2006; 97(6):866-71. · 3.21 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The role of echocardiography in the clinical assessment of right ventricular (RV) systolic function remains limited. Limited data exist on the potential use of newer techniques for RV function assessment. Conventional echocardiography and tissue Doppler echocardiography (TDE) were performed during right-sided cardiac catheterization in 46 patients. Thermodilution or the Fick-derived RV stroke volume indexed (RVSVI) indexed to body surface area was used as the reference standard. Univariate and multivariate regression analyses were used to test correlations between RVSVI and various echocardiographic and TDE-derived parameters. In a subset of 12 subjects, changes in echocardiographic and TDE variables to reduced afterload from intravenous epoprostenol were measured. TDE-derived RV tissue displacement and systolic strain best predicted the RVSVI (r = 0.63, p = 0.001; r = 0.48, p = 0.002, respectively). The prediction improved after adjustment for tricuspid regurgitation jet vena contracta width (r = 0.74, p < 0.0001; r = 0.60, p < 0.001, respectively). Assuming a RVSVI of > or =30 ml/m(2) as normal, a RV displacement cutoff of 15 mm yielded a sensitivity of 100% and a specificity of 41% for RV dysfunction, and an RV systolic strain cutoff of 20% yielded a sensitivity of 91% and a specificity of 63%. The percentage change of RV systolic displacement correlated well with the percentage change of RVSVI after epoprostenol infusion (r = 0.75, p < 0.001). In conclusion, TDE-derived RV displacement and strain closely correlate with RVSVI and appropriately track load-related changes in RV function. These new parameters may help provide the noninvasive, quantitative assessment of RV function.
The American Journal of Cardiology 10/2005; 96(8):1173-8. · 3.21 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Strain echocardiography can depict segmental mechanical activity with high temporal and spatial accuracy, and may allow assessment of segmental relaxation not possible with conventional echocardiography.
Conventional and strain echocardiography were performed in healthy volunteers (young [group 1] and old [group 2]) and patients with normal 2-dimensional and stress echocardiography, with either normal global diastolic function (group 3a) or grade I or II global diastolic dysfunction (DD) (group 3b). Standard echocardiography criteria were used to define global DD. Early to late diastolic strain rate ratio less than 1.1 was defined as altered segmental relaxation.
All participants had normal wall motion and ejection fraction. Participants of group 1 had normal segmental and global diastolic function. Participants of groups 2 and 3a demonstrated a wide range of altered segmental relaxation in the absence of global DD. All patients of group 3b had 12 or more segments with altered relaxation and global DD. Age and hypertension were associated with a larger number of altered segments, a lower mean early to late diastolic strain rate ratio, and global DD.
A wide range of altered segmental relaxation can exist in the absence of global DD. Age and hypertension are associated with altered segmental relaxation and global DD. Assessment of segmental relaxation may be beneficial in the elderly and patients with hypertension.
Journal of the American Society of Echocardiography: official publication of the American Society of Echocardiography 10/2005; 18(9):901-6. · 2.98 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To assess left atrial (LA) function and determine the prevalence of LA dysfunction in AL amyloidosis (AL) using conventional and strain echocardiography.
LA ejection fraction, LA filling fraction, LA ejection force, peak LA systolic strain rate (LAsSR), and LA systolic strain (LA epsilon) were determined in 95 AL patients (70 with and 25 without echocardiographic evidence of cardiac involvement, abbreviated CAL and NCAL, respectively), 30 age-matched controls (CON), and 20 patients with diastolic dysfunction and LA dilatation (DD). Peak LAsSR >2 standard deviations below mean CON value was used as the cut-off for normal LA function. LA ejection fraction was lower in CAL when compared with CON (40.4+/-13.6 vs. 67.0+/-6%, P=0.01). Left atrial septal strain rate and strain were lower in CAL (0.8+/-0.5 s(-1) and 5.5+/-4%, respectively) compared with CON (1.8+/-0.8 s(-1) and 14+/-4%, respectively, P=<0.0001), NCAL (1.6+/-0.8 s(-1) and 13+/-7%, respectively, P<0.0001) and DD (1.3+/-0.4 s(-1) and 10+/-2%, respectively, P<0.0001). Based on peak LA systolic strain rate criteria, the cut-off values for normal LA function were -1.1 s(-1) and -1.05 s(-1) for lateral and septal walls. Using these criteria, LA dysfunction was identified in 32% (lateral LA criteria) and 60% (septal LA criteria) of CAL patients. Lateral and septal LAsSR were lower in CAL patients with vs. those without symptoms of heart failure. Inter- and intra-observer agreement was high for LA strain echocardiography.
LA function assessment using strain echocardiography is feasible with low intra- and inter-observer variability. LA dysfunction is observed in AL patients without other echocardiographic features of cardiac involvement and may contribute to cardiac symptoms in CAL.
European Heart Journal 01/2005; 26(2):173-9. · 14.10 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Echocardiographic-guided pericardiocentesis was found to be safe and efficacious in treating 11 patients with systemic lupus erythematosus who had hemodynamically significant pericardial effusions. These patients tended to present early in their disease course, and men were more often affected.
The American Journal of Cardiology 01/2004; 92(11):1370-2. · 3.21 Impact Factor