Assessment of the relationship between aortic stiffness and left ventricular functions with echocardiography in patients with Sjögren's syndrome

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Background and aim:

Capable of multi-organ involvement in Sjogren's syndrome (SS), cardiac findings of pulmonary effusion, left ventricular diastolic dysfunction and pulmonary hypertension are seen in patients with SS. Aortic stiffness (AS) reflects the mechanical tension and elasticity of the aorta. In this study, our aim is to determine if there is any differences in AS and left ventricular function between patients diagnosed as SS and healthy control groups.

Methods and results:

We enrolled 50 patients with SS and 47 healthy volunteers with similar demographic characteristics. It was found that isovolumetric relaxation time (IVRT) and deceleration time (DT) were significantly longer and early diastolic wave (E) was significantly lower in patients with SS, but there was no difference in the other parameters. When tissue Doppler echocardiography (TDE) findings were compared between the two groups, it was found that myocardial systolic wave (Sm), myocardial early diastolic wave (Em) and Em/Am ratio were significantly lower, and myocardial isovolumetric relaxation time (IVRTm) and myocardial performance index (MPI) values were significantly higher in patients with SS. A significant positive correlations between aortic strain and Sm (r = 0.35, P < 0.001), Em (r = 0.42, P < 0.001) and Em/Am (r = 0.26, P = 0.008) and negative correlations in IVRTm (r = −0.36, P < 0.001) and MPI (r = −0.24, P = 0.01) were detected. A significant positive correlation between aortic distensibility and Sm (r = 0.36, P < 0.001), Em (r = 0.44, P < 0.001), Em/Am (r = 0.26, P = 0.009) and negative correlation of IVRTm (r = −0.22, P = 0.02) were determined.


There is a significant relationship between AS and left ventricular diastolic dysfunction in patients with SS in this study. The parameters of aortic elasticity measured by 2D echocardiographic methods can be beneficial in predicting early cardiovascular risk in SS.

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