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    ABSTRACT: Mitral annular calcification (MAC) is known to be associated with degenerative processes of the cardiac fibrous skeleton and cardiovascular disease mortality. However, MAC has not been evaluated in an extreme age group (patients >/=90 years of age). In this study, the clinical significance of MAC associated with aging was examined in this age group and compared with MAC associated with aging in a younger (20 to 50 years of age) group of patients. We assessed echocardiographic parameters in 43 nonagenarians and 51 young patients. In the nonagenarian group, patient's age was 92+/-2 years and 27% were male; in the young control group, patient's age was 36+/-9 years and 51% were male. Comprehensive M-mode and Doppler echocardiography, including tissue Doppler imaging, were performed. The frequency and severity of MAC was assessed from the leading anterior to the trailing posterior edge at its largest width for least 3 cardiac cycles. Echocardiography showed that the left ventricular (LV) end-diastolic dimension was larger in the young controls (p=0.007); however, the ejection fraction (EF) was lower in the nonagenarian group (p=0.001). The frequency of MAC was greater in nonagenarians {42/43 (97%)} than in controls {9/51 (17%), p<0.0001}. The maximal width of MAC was larger in nonagenarians (0.52+/-0.17 mm and 0.05+/-0.13 mm, p<0.0001). MAC was correlated with LV mass index (g/m(2)) (r=0.280, p=0.014) and EF (%) (r=-0.340, p=0.001). More importantly, early mitral inflow velocity/early diastolic mitral annulus velocity (E/E') was strongly correlated with MAC in non-agenarians (r= 0.683, p<0.0001). MAC may be associated with extreme age and increased LV filling pressure in nonagenarians. Further study is necessary to assess the cardiovascular mortality and structural changes related to mitral annulus calcification associated with aging.
    Korean Circulation Journal 06/2010; 40(6):260-5.