A method for the morphological analysis of the regurgitant mitral valve using three dimensional echocardiography

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Atrial en-face reconstructions are commonly used to assess mitral valve morphology in three dimensional (3D) echocardiography but may miss important abnormalities.


To present a systematic method for the analysis of the regurgitant mitral valve using a combination of en-face and longitudinal views for better anatomical evaluation.


Detailed 3D assessment was done on 58 patients undergoing mitral valve repair. En-face and longitudinal views were compared for detection and location of primary pathology. The quality of acquisitions under general anaesthesia and sedation was also compared.


Recognition of valve structure was significantly better with longitudinal reconstruction for both mitral leaflets but not for the commissures. Accurate identification of pathology was possible in 95% cases, compared with 50% for en-face reconstruction (p < 0.001). There was no significant difference between imaging under sedation and anaesthesia.


En-face reconstructions alone are inadequate. Additional longitudinal reconstructions are necessary to ensure full inspection of valve morphology.

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