Cardiac Diastolic Dysfunction is Associated With Aortic Wave Reflection, but Not Stiffness in a Predominantly Young-to-Middle–Aged Community Sample

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Whether the impact of backward wave pressures (Pbs) on left ventricular (LV) diastolic dysfunction (DD) antedates the effects of aortic stiffness is uncertain. We compared the relative contribution of various aortic hemodynamic parameters to preclinical DD in a predominantly young-to-middle–aged community-based sample.


In 524 randomly selected participants of African ancestry (mean age = 46.8±18.4 years), we assessed central aortic pulse pressure (PPc), forward wave pressure (Pf), Pb, augmented pressure (Pa), the time-to-wave reflection (Rt), and aortic pulse wave velocity (PWV) using applanation tonometry (SphygmoCor software). LV mass index (LVMI), early to late transmitral velocity (E/A), and E/velocity of myocardial tissue lengthening (E/e′) were determined using echocardiography.


Independent of age, sex, mean arterial pressure, body mass index, diabetes mellitus and/or HbA1c > 6.1%, regular smoking, regular alcohol intake, treatment for hypertension, pulse rate, and LVMI; PPc (P < 0.002), Pb (P < 0.0005), Pa (P < 0.002), and Pf (P < 0.02), but not Rt or PWV were independently associated with E/e′ (but not with E/A). With adjustments for confounders, PPc (P < 0.005), Pb (P < 0.002), and Pa (P < 0.001), but not Pf, Rt, or PWV were independently associated with E/e′ ≥ 12 (moderate-to-severe DD, n = 69). The independent relations between PPc and E/e′ or moderate-to-severe DD were not affected by adjustments for PWV, Pf, or Rt, but were abolished with adjustments for Pb.


In a predominantly young-to-middle–aged community sample, the impact of Pbs on LV DD antedates the effects of aortic stiffness, the time-to-wave reflection, or Pfs.

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