Mechanical dyssynchrony in patients with heart failure and reduced ejection fraction: how to measure?

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Abstract

Purpose of review

This article summarizes the most recent imaging techniques to assess left ventricular mechanical dyssynchrony and discusses their value to predict response to cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) together with assessment of myocardial scar and cardiac venous anatomy.

Recent findings

Left ventricular mechanical dyssynchrony has been associated with prognosis of heart failure patients and has been shown to influence the efficacy of CRT. Although current guidelines do not recommend the assessment of left ventricular mechanical dyssynchrony to select heart failure patients for CRT, technological advances in echocardiography, cardiac magnetic resonance, nuclear imaging and computed tomography have provided powerful tools to characterize left ventricular mechanical dyssynchrony and predict response to CRT. Most important, these imaging techniques permit integration of additional information that is relevant for the efficacy of CRT, such as the extent and location of myocardial scar and the anatomy of the coronary sinus and tributaries where the left ventricular pacing lead may be positioned.

Summary

Left ventricular mechanical dyssynchrony is an important parameter to select heart failure patients who are candidates for CRT. The integration of this parameter together with extent and location of myocardial scar and cardiac venous anatomy is a key to optimize the efficacy of CRT.

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