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Impact of cardiac resynchronization therapy using hemodynamically optimized pacing on left ventricular remodeling in patients with congestive heart failure and ventricular conduction disturbances.

OBJECTIVES: We sought to investigate the impact of six months of cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) on echocardiographic variables of left ventricular (LV) function.

BACKGROUND: Cardiac resynchronization therapy has recently been introduced as a new therapeutic modality in patients with advanced heart failure (HF) and conduction abnormalities. However, most studies have only investigated the early hemodynamic effects of CRT.

METHODS: Twenty-five patients (12 women and 13 men; 59.8 +/- 5.1 years old) with advanced HF caused by ischemic (n = 7) or idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy (n = 18) and a prolonged QRS complex were analyzed. All patients underwent early hemodynamic testing with a randomized testing protocol; echocardiographic measurements were compared before implantation and after six months of CRT.

RESULTS: Left ventricular end-diastolic and end-systolic diameters (LVEDD and LVESD, respectively) were significantly reduced after six months (LVEDD from 71 +/- 10 to 68 +/- 11 mm, p = 0.027; LVESD from 63 +/- 11 to 58 +/- 11 mm, p = 0.007), as were LV end-diastolic and end-systolic volumes (LVEDV from 253 +/- 83 to 227 +/- 112 ml, p = 0.017; LVESV from 202 +/- 79 to 174 +/- 101 ml, p = 0.009). Ejection fraction was significantly increased (from 22 +/- 7% to 26 +/- 9%, p = 0.03). "Nonresponders," with regard to LV volume reduction, had significantly higher baseline LVEDV, compared with "responders" (351 +/- 52 vs. 234 +/- 74 ml, p = 0.018). Overall, there was only mild mitral regurgitation at baseline, with a minor reduction by semiquantitative analysis. The results of early hemodynamic testing did not predict the volume response.

CONCLUSIONS: Cardiac resynchronization therapy may lead to a reduction in LV volumes in patients with advanced HF and conduction disturbances. Volume nonresponders have significantly higher baseline LVEDV.

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