Right Ventricular Global Longitudinal Strain Provides Prognostic Value Incremental to Left Ventricular Ejection Fraction in Patients with Heart Failure

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Abstract

Background:

Right ventricular (RV) global longitudinal strain (RV strain) is a sensitive measure of RV mechanics. Its relationship with standard clinical markers and long-term events in chronic systolic heart failure is not well established. The aim of this study was to examine the ability of RV strain to provide incremental prognostic value to left ventricular (LV) ejection fraction (LVEF) in patients with chronic systolic heart failure.

Methods:

In 171 patients with chronic systolic heart failure (LVEF ≤ 35%), a retrospective substudy of RV strain was performed using Velocity Vector Imaging to analyze previously recorded, comprehensive echocardiographic images. Death, cardiac transplantation, and heart failure hospitalization were tracked for 5 years.

Results:

In this study cohort (mean age, 57 ± 14 years; mean LVEF, 25 ± 6%), mean RV strain was −11.6 ± 5.4%. More impaired RV strain was associated with increasing New York Heart Association class (rank-sums P < .0001) and greater LV volume (LV end-systolic volume index: r = 0.35, P < .0001). Worse RV strain was associated with reduced LVEF (r = −0.45, P < .0001), worse LV diastolic dysfunction (E/e′ septal: r = 0.19, P = .017; left atrial volume index: r = 0.18, P = .031), and standard indices of RV systolic and diastolic dysfunction (RV s′: r = −0.43, P < .0001; RV e′/a′: r = 0.16, P = .0040; right atrial volume index: r = 0.20, P = .015). RV strain predicted long-term adverse events (hazard ratio, 1.30; 95% confidence interval, 1.02–1.70; P = .037). Furthermore, RV strain ≥ −14.8% predicted adverse events after adjustment for age, LVEF, RV s′, E/e′ septal, and right atrial volume index.

Conclusion:

In patients with chronic systolic heart failure, worse RV strain provides prognostic value incremental to LV function.

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