Atrial Mechanics after Surgical Repair of Tetralogy of Fallot

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Ventricular diastolic dysfunction in patients with repaired tetralogy of Fallot (TOF) may affect atrial mechanics. This study aimed to explore right atrial (RA) and left atrial (LA) mechanics in repaired TOF patients and their relationship with ventricular diastolic function.


Fifty-four patients (36 males), aged 17.8 ± 8.3 years, who had undergone TOF repair at 3.9 ± 3.3 years and 40 healthy subjects aged 16.9 ± 6.3 years (P = 0.57) were studied. Right and LA peak positive, peak negative, and total strain, strain rate at ventricular systole (SRs), early diastole (SRed), and atrial contraction (SRac), and electromechanical delay were determined using speckle tracking echocardiography (STE). Ventricular diastolic function was assessed by tissue Doppler imaging and STE. Ventricular volumes and pulmonary regurgitant volume were derived from 3D echocardiography.


Compared with controls, patients had significantly lower RA and LA peak positive and total strain, SRs, SRed, and SRac (all P < 0.001). The timing of RA (178 ± 33 msec vs. 152 ± 17 msec, P < 0.001) and LA (170 ± 32 msec vs. 152 ± 24 msec, P = 0.006) electromechanical coupling (EMC) was significantly longer in patients than in controls. The RA total strain, SRs, SRed, SRac, and EMC correlated positively with corresponding LA parameters (all P < 0.001). The RA and LA total strain and SRed were associated positively with diastolic annular velocities and strain rates of respective ventricles (all P < 0.05). The LA SRed correlated negatively with pulmonary regurgitant volume (r = −0.33, P = 0.016) and RV end-diastolic volume (r = −0.33, P = 0.015).


Mechanics of both atria are impaired in patients after repair of TOF and are associated with diastolic performance of the respective ventricles.

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