Tricuspid annular velocity assessed by doppler tissue imaging as a marker of right ventricular involvement in the acute and late phase after a first ST elevation myocardial infarction

Nils Witt, Mahbubul Alam, Leif Svensson, Bassem A Samad
Echocardiography 2010, 27 (2): 139-45

BACKGROUND: Right ventricular (RV) involvement in patients with ST elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) is a clinically important problem. The aim of this study was to evaluate the use of tricuspid annular velocity assessed by Doppler tissue imaging (DTI) as a marker of RV involvement in patients with a first STEMI.

METHODS: Seventy-one patients with a first STEMI were examined by echocardiography before discharge and after 6 months. The patients were compared to 31 healthy subjects (HS). The diagnosis of RV infarction was based on the presence of >or= 1 mm ST elevation in the right precordial ECG lead V4R. Tricuspid annular systolic and diastolic velocities using pulsed-wave DTI were recorded at the RV free wall.

RESULTS: At day 1, tricuspid annular velocities were significantly reduced in patients with, compared to those without, ST elevation in V4R (11.1 vs. 13.7 cm/sec, 9.4 vs. 13.1 cm/sec and 14.1 vs. 15.9 cm/sec for systolic, early, and late diastolic velocities, respectively; P < 0.01). With a cutoff value for a tricuspid annular systolic velocity of 13 cm/sec, sensitivity and specificity for identifying patients with ST elevation in V4R were 89% and 71%, respectively. After 6 months, both tricuspid annular systolic and diastolic velocities in patients with RV infarction had increased significantly, but only tricuspid annular systolic velocity was still reduced compared to HS (12.3 vs. 14.7 cm/sec; P < 0.01).

CONCLUSION: Tricuspid annular velocities assessed by DTI may be used as a marker of RV involvement in the acute and the late phase after a first STEMI.

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