Left ventricular strain-volume loops and diastolic dysfunction in suspected heart failure with preserved ejection fraction

International Journal of Cardiology

Thijs P Kerstens, Jerremy Weerts, Arie PJ van Dijk, Gert Weijers, C Knackstedt, Thijs MH Eijsvogels, David Oxborough, Vanessa PM van Empel, Dick HJ Thijssen

Background Presence of left ventricular diastolic dysfunction (DD) is key in the pathogenesis of heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF). However, non-invasive assessment of diastolic function is complex, cumbersome, and largely based on consensus recommendations. Novel imaging techniques may help detecting DD. Therefore, we compared left ventricular strain-volume loop (SVL) characteristics and diastolic (dys-)function in suspected HFpEF patients.

Method and results 257 suspected HFpEF patients with sinus rhythm during echocardiography were prospectively included. 211 patients with quality-controlled images and strain and volume analysis were classified according to the 2016 ASE/EACVI recommendations. Patients with indeterminate diastolic function were excluded, resulting in two groups: normal diastolic function (control; n = 65) and DD (n = 91). Patients with DD were older (74.8 ± 6.9 vs. 68.5 ± 9.4 years, p < 0.001), more often female (88% vs 72%, p = 0.021), and more often had a history of atrial fibrillation (42% vs. 23%, p = 0.024) and hypertension (91% vs. 71%, p = 0.001) compared to normal diastolic function. SVL analysis showed a larger uncoupling i.e., a different longitudinal strain contribution to volume change, in DD compared to controls (0.556 ± 1.10% vs. -0.051 ± 1.14%, respectively, P < 0.001). This observation suggests different deformational properties during the cardiac cycle. After adjustment for age, sex, history of atrial fibrillation and hypertension, we found an adjusted odds ratio of 1.68 (95% confidence interval 1.19–2.47) for DD per unit increase in uncoupling (range: −2.95–3.20).

Conclusion Uncoupling of the SVL is independently associated with DD. This might provide novel insights in cardiac mechanics and new opportunities to assess diastolic function non-invasively.

Overige afdelingen Imaging