Sequential versus simultaneous biventricular resynchronization for severe heart failure: evaluation by tissue Doppler imaging

Peter Sogaard, Henrik Egeblad, Anders K Pedersen, Won Yong Kim, Bent O Kristensen, Peter S Hansen, Peter T Mortensen
Circulation 2002 October 15, 106 (16): 2078-84

BACKGROUND: Cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) by means of simultaneous biventricular pacing improves left ventricular systolic performance and synchrony in patients with heart failure and bundle-branch block. We used tissue tracking and 3D echocardiography to evaluate the impact of sequential CRT with individualized interventricular delay programming.

METHODS AND RESULTS: Twenty consecutive patients with severe heart failure and left bundle-branch block were included. Tissue tracking and 3D echocardiography were carried out before and on the day after pacemaker implantation. Eleven different interventricular delays were examined in each patient. Patients were reexamined after 3 months. Simultaneous CRT immediately reduced the extent of myocardium displaying delayed longitudinal contraction (DLC) from 48.6+/-16% to 23.2+/-13% (P<0.01) and increased left ventricular ejection fraction percentage (LVEF%) from 22.4+/-6% to 29.7+/-5% (P<0.01). However, optimum sequential CRT caused a further reduction in the extent of DLC from 23.2+/-13% to 11.1+/-7.2% (P<0.01), with a simultaneous increase in LVEF% (from 29.7+/-5% to 33.9+/-6%, P<0.01). Three months of optimum sequential CRT further improved LVEF% (from 33.6+/-6% to 38.6+/-7.2%, P<0.01). Tissue tracking detected the segments with DLC, and their location determined optimum interventricular delay programming. Compared with simultaneous CRT, sequential CRT increased diastolic filling time by 7+/-2.5%.

CONCLUSIONS: Compared with simultaneous CRT, sequential CRT significantly improves left ventricular systolic and diastolic performance. Tissue tracking can be used to select optimum interventricular delay during CRT.

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