[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to assess the incremental value of tissue harmonic imaging vs conventional echocardiography for evaluating left ventricular ejection fraction by manual and automated quantitation as well as visual estimation in patients with distorted left ventricles.
In 25 patients unselected for image quality and with distorted left ventricles who underwent a nuclear study, digital cineloops of standard apical views were acquired by both tissue harmonic imaging and conventional echocardiography and sent to six observers for analysis of visual and quantitative left ventricular ejection fraction. Tissue harmonic imaging improved both the correlation and agreement of all echo techniques with nuclear measures, compared with conventional echocardiography echo, reducing standard errors (SE) to below 10%: for the visual estimate SE=7.5%, for manual tracing SE=6.3% and for automated tracing SE=8%. Tissue harmonic imaging decreased inter-observer variability compared with conventional echocardiography echo for both visual assessment (12.4% vs 18.4%, P<0.05) and quantitative measures (for manual tracing, 8.2% vs 11.8%, P<0.05; for automated tracing, 7.8% vs 16.8%, P<0.05).
In patients with distorted left ventricles unselected for image quality, tissue harmonic imaging improves accuracy and reproducibility of both visual and quantitative echocardiographic assessment of left ventricular ejection fraction. In particular, it promotes automated quantitation by reducing its high standard error into a clinically reasonable range.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors undoubtedly represent a milestone in cardiovascular therapy. They are known to halt the progression of coronary artery disease by interrupting the series of events that lead to end-stage ischaemic heart disease. Moreover, in patients with severe heart failure, ACE inhibitors, quite surprisingly, reduce the recurrence of angina pectoris and myocardial infarction, hospitalization for ischaemic heart disease, and the rate of coronary artery bypass surgery or angioplasty. More recently ACE inhibitors have been postulated to reduce vascular hypertrophy, attenuate atherosclerosis and influence mortality and hospitalization when used in patients with left ventricular dysfunction without overt heart failure. The results of the Heart Outcomes Prevention Evaluation (HOPE) study confirm that this is the case, and that these agents can reduce the incidence of coronary events. Two other major trials, on the same subject but substantially different from HOPE, namely the EUropean trial on Reduction Of cardiac events with Perindopril in stable coronary Artery disease (EUROPA) and the Prevention of Events with ACE inhibitors (PEACE) study, are underway. The clinical hypothesis to be tested is that prolonged ACE inhibition reduces the progression of coronary atherosclerosis; the biological hypothesis is that prolonged ACE inhibition reduces or even reverses endothelial dysfunction to normal—a mechanism in which bradykinin might be
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Clinical application of the color Doppler proximal isovelocity surface area (PISA) method to quantify mitral regurgitation (MR) has been limited by the often inaccurate assumption that isovelocity surfaces are hemispheric. This study applied an objective method for selecting the region where the hemispheric geometry holds best on the basis of mathematic analysis of results at different distances from the orifice. We aimed to demonstrate this approach can be applied accurately in the clinical setting and can be semiautomated to promote routine use by extracting velocities from the digital Doppler output and then performing all the calculations automatically.
In 75 patients with isolated MR, centerline velocities (V(r)) at each distance (r) from the orifice in the proximal flow field were extracted digitally. The automated analysis calculated peak MR flow rates as 2pir(2)V(r) and plotted these against their respective velocities. The optimal value for peak flow rate was obtained mathematically at the site where the slope of this curve was minimal (least inaccuracy). This value was combined with continuous wave Doppler data to provide regurgitant stroke volume (RSV) and orifice area (ROA), which were compared with quantitative Doppler in 75 patients and angiography in 42.
RSV and ROA by this optimized, semiautomated PISA method correlated and agreed well with values from quantitative Doppler (y = 0.9x + 1.9, r = 0.90, standard error of the estimate [SEE] = 8.1 mL, mean difference = -0.7 +/- 8.5 mL for RSV; y = 0.9x + 0.02, r = 0.90, SEE = 0.048 cm(2), mean difference = -0.005 +/- 0.1 cm(2) for ROA) and correlated well with angiography (rho = 0.90 for both RSV and ROA).
This objective PISA method for quantifying MR is accurate in the clinical setting and has been semiautomated by use of analysis of digital velocity data to provide a rapid and practical technique suitable to facilitate more extensive application in routine practice.
American Heart Journal 05/2001; 141(4):653-60. · 4.50 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: During reentrant supraventricular tachycardias involving the atrioventricular node (AVN-SVT) or an AV bypass tract (AV-SVT), atrial pressure increases. While in AVN-SVT this increase relates to atrial contraction during ventricular systole, the mechanism remains unclear in AV-SVT. This study sought to clarify this mechanism. During 11 AVN-SVTs and 9 AV-SVTs, anterograde flow through the AV valves and retrograde flow in the pulmonary and hepatic veins were studied by pulsed-wave (PW) Doppler measuring the time interval between the ECG-R wave and (1) the end of venous retrograde flows, and (2) the beginning of valvular anterograde flows. The positive or negative difference between these two time intervals guided recognizing the atrial contraction against open or closed AV valves. Intracavitary pressures and cardiac index were also measured. During AVN-SVTs, venous retrograde flows always ended before the anterograde valvular flows, indicating atrial contraction against closed AV valves. During AV-SVTs, pulmonary retrograde flow ended before the beginning of mitral anterograde flow in five cases, began before but ended during the anterograde flow in three cases, and overlapped to the anterograde flow in one case. A corresponding behavior was observed at the right side of the heart. In both SVTs, atrial pressures increased and end-diastolic ventricular pressure and cardiac index decreased similarly. During AVN-SVT, the atrial contraction always occurs against closed AV valves, and during AV-SVT it generally occurs against totally or partially closed AV valves, explaining similar atrial pressure and cardiac index changes in both SVTs.
Pacing and Clinical Electrophysiology 01/2001; 23(12):2078-85. · 1.75 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Two-dimensional echocardiography is a readily applicable method for the quantification of ventricular volumes. However, it is limited by assumptions regarding ventricular shape. Three-dimensional echocardiography has emerged as a more accurate and reproducible approach to ventricular volume and functional assessment compared with two-dimensional echocardiography. We review the principles of transthoracic rotational scanning and its clinical application for quantitative assessment of ventricular volume and function.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Myocardial perfusion scintigraphy with a Tc-99m sestamibi single-day SPECT protocol is a widely used technique to examine patients with possible or known coronary artery disease. A 76-year-old man with a clinical history suggestive of ischemic heart disease underwent Tc-99m sestamibi myocardial SPECT imaging with a same-day rest and stress protocol after temporary discontinuation of his current therapy, which included calcium channel and beta blockers and nitrates. The scintigraphic pattern was consistent with an asymptomatic infarction of the posterolateral myocardial wall and periinfarct ischemia. One week later, the patient had a Tc-99m sestamibi myocardial SPECT study at rest without discontinuing therapy, and scintigraphic images showed normalization of the posterolateral wall perfusion defect. The angiographic study showed a 90% stenosis of the circumflex artery. This case suggests that, during a 1-day cardiac SPECT protocol, washout of therapeutic pharmaceuticals may be responsible for underestimation of myocardial rest perfusion in territory supplied by a coronary artery with a critical stenosis.
Clinical Nuclear Medicine 05/2000; 25(4):255-7. · 2.96 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The hemodynamic effects of atrial flutter (AF) are unknown. The purpose of the present study was to investigate the changes in atrial and ventricular pressures after induction of AF. In 23 patients with paroxysmal AF (age 59 +/- 9 years), a hemodynamic study was performed both during sinus rhythm and after induction of the tachyarrhythmia. During AF, 13 patients showed a fixed 2:1 AV conduction and 10 patients showed variable conduction. Mean right and left atrial pressures increased (P < 0.001) and right and left ventricular end-diastolic pressures decreased (P < 0.001) after induction of AF. Both the increase in mean atrial pressures and the decrease in ventricular end-diastolic pressures were present either in the patients with fixed 2:1 AV (heart rate: 133 +/- 15 beats/min) or in those with variable conduction (heart rate 96 +/- 15 beats/min), but were more marked in the former. AF produces an impairment of atrial function, as evidenced by the increase in mean atrial pressures and reduction in ventricular end-diastolic pressures in the absence of an elevated heart rate. The mechanisms responsible for the increase in mean atrial pressures are unknown; however, atrial contractions against closed AV valves seem to play an important role.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The goal of this study was to validate the quantitative accuracy of a system for 3-dimensional (3D) echocardiographic reconstruction of the left ventricle to assess its volume and function in human beings by using 3 apical views as a simplified technique to promote practical clinical application. End-diastolic and end-systolic volumes (EDV, ESV) and ejection fraction (EF) were obtained by 3D echocardiography in 50 patients with dilated or geometrically distorted left ventricles and compared with values from magnetic resonance imaging (20 consecutive patients), angiography (22 consecutive patients), and radionuclide imaging (8 consecutive patients). Three-dimensional results were also compared with 2-dimensional (2D) echocardiographic estimates. Three-dimensional left ventricular reconstruction provided values that correlated and agreed well with pooled data from the other techniques for EDV (y = 0.93x + 9.1, r = 0.95, standard error of the estimate [SEE] = 15.2 mL, mean difference = -0.5 +/- 15.4 mL), ESV (y = 0.94x + 4.3, r = 0. 96, SEE = 11.4 mL, mean difference = 0.4 +/- 11.5 mL), and EF (y = 0. 90x + 4.1, r = 0.92, SEE = 6.2%, mean difference = -0.9 +/- 6.4%) (all mean differences not significant versus 0), with greater errors by 2D echocardiography. Intraobserver and interobserver variabilities of 3D echocardiography were less than 6% for EDV, ESV, and EF. The overall time for image acquisition and 3D reconstruction was 5 to 8 minutes. Although this 3D method uses only a small number of apical views, it accurately calculates EDV, ESV, and EF in patients with dilated and asymmetric left ventricles and is more accurate than 2D echocardiography. The flexible surface fit used to combine the 3 views provides a convenient visual output as well as quantitation. This simple and rapid 3D method has the potential to facilitate routine clinical applications that assess left ventricular function and changes that occur with remodeling.
Journal of the American Society of Echocardiography 12/1998; 11(11):1001-12. · 4.28 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To overcome the limitations of conventional M-mode echocardiography, a new technique referred to as anatomic M-mode has been recently developed. This technique is based on postprocessing of digitally acquired two-dimensional (2D) cineloops, and allows the operator to position one or multiple independent M-mode cursors freely on the 2D images. Initial clinical data show that anatomic M-mode can increase the reproducibility and accuracy of standard M-mode measurements of the left ventricle. Also, this quantitative technique has the potential to improve assessment of left ventricular wall motion and thickening, and could be particularly useful in providing objective measures during stress echocardiography.
The American Journal of Cardiology 07/1998; 81(12A):82G-85G. · 3.21 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A simplified system for three-dimensional (3D) reconstruction of the left ventricle and quantitation of its size and function is described. This system requires the acquisition of a minimum number of two-dimensional (2D) echocardiographic apical views, which are obtained by rotation of the probe about the initial imaging point. Traced endocardial borders are spatially reconstructed according to the common apex and longitudinal axis of the views and to the measured or assumed angular relation between scanned planes. This technique has been applied in vitro to regular and irregular ventricular phantoms, yielding excellent accuracy for volume calculation. Also, it has been applied clinically for left ventricular volume, stroke volume, and ejection fraction calculation in both normal subjects and patients with various cardiac diseases, providing good results compared with other independent imaging techniques and showing increased accuracy with respect to 2D echocardiographic methods. Because this is obtained without substantial increase in time, effort, or cost, this simplified technique for 3D reconstruction should therefore be of value in daily clinical echocardiographic practice.
The American Journal of Cardiology 07/1998; 81(12A):107G-110G. · 3.21 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recently, short-term hemodynamic benefits of right ventricular outflow tract (RVOT) or proximal septum (His bundle area) pacing have been reported in comparison with traditional apical stimulation in preliminary investigations. The purpose of the present study was to compare the hemodynamics obtained during DDD pacing from ventricular apex, RVOT and proximal septum in patients with normal left ventricular function. A simultaneous hemodynamic and Doppler-echocardiographic study was performed in 21 patients (age 67 +/- 7 years) with sick-sinus syndrome (8 pts) or 2nd-3rd degree atrioventricular (AV) block (13 pts). The three stimulation sites were randomized and pacing was applied at an identical rate (84 +/- 5 beats/min) and at a constant AV delay (150 ms). Electrocardiographic, hemodynamic and Doppler-echocardiographic investigations were performed during stimulation from each site. The QRS duration did not show significant differences during DDD pacing from ventricular apex, RVOT and proximal septum. The hemodynamic measurements (systemic pressures, mean pulmonary wedge pressure, pulmonary pressures, right ventricular end-diastolic pressure, mean right atrial pressure, cardiac index, systemic vascular resistance and arteriovenous O2 difference) did not show significant differences during pacing from the three sites. Moreover, no significant differences were observed for the Doppler-echocardiographic measurements of systolic function (aortic stroke distance, left ventricular ejection fraction) and diastolic function (isovolumetric relaxion time, mitral E/A ratio, deceleration rate of the E wave). The results suggest that in patients with normal left ventricular function DDD pacing from RVOT or proximal septum does not improve cardiac function with regard to apical pacing.
Giornale italiano di cardiologia 04/1998; 28(3):237-41.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recent studies have shown good agreement between proximal regurgitant jet size obtained with transthoracic color flow mapping and regurgitant fraction in patients with mitral regurgitation. To evaluate this in patients with tricuspid regurgitation, we analyzed 40 patients in sinus rhythm, 16 with free jets and 24 with impinging jets, comparing proximal jet size (millimeters) with parameters derived from the Doppler two-dimensional echocardiographic method (regurgitant fraction) and the flow-convergence method (peak flow rate, effective regurgitant orifice area, and momentum). Good agreement was noted between peak flow rate (r = 0.80, p < 0.001), momentum (r = 0.80, p < 0.001), and effective regurgitant orifice area (r = 0.78, p < 0.001), with proximal jet size measured in the apical four-chamber view in patients with free jets. The average of jet proximal size in three planes also had good correlation with peak flow rate (r = 0.75, p < 0.001), regurgitant fraction, momentum, and effective regurgitant orifice area (r = 0.74, p < 0.001). In patients with impinging jets, agreement was fair between effective regurgitant orifice (r = 0.65, p < 0.001), peak flow rate (0.65, p < 0.001), and momentum (r = 0.62, p < 0.001) with mean jet proximal size. Jet proximal size obtained with transthoracic color flow mapping is a good semiquantitative tool for measuring tricuspid regurgitation in free jets that correlates well with established measures of the severity and with new parameters available from analysis of the proximal acceleration field. In patients with eccentrically directed wall jets, the correlation weakens but still appears clinically significant.
American Heart Journal 05/1996; 131(4):742-7. · 4.50 Impact Factor