Comparative mechanical activation mapping of RV pacing to LBBB by 2D and 3D speckle tracking and association with response to resynchronization therapy

Hidekazu Tanaka, Hideyuki Hara, Evan C Adelstein, David Schwartzman, Samir Saba, John Gorcsan
JACC. Cardiovascular Imaging 2010, 3 (5): 461-71

OBJECTIVES: The goals of this study were to compare patterns of mechanical activation in patients with chronic right ventricular (RV) pacing with those with left bundle branch block (LBBB) using 2-dimensional and novel 3-dimensional speckle tracking, and to compare ejection fraction (EF) response and long-term survival after cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT).

BACKGROUND: Several randomized CRT trials have excluded patients with chronic RV pacing, and current guidelines for CRT include patients with intrinsically widened QRS, typically LBBB.

METHODS: We studied 308 patients who were referred for CRT: 227 had LBBB, 81 were RV paced. Dyssynchrony was assessed by tissue Doppler, routine pulsed Doppler, and 2-dimensional speckle-tracking radial strain. 3D strain was assessed using speckle tracking from a pyramidal dataset in a subset of 57 patients for mechanical activation mapping. Survival after CRT was compared with survival in a group of 46 patients with attempted, but failed, CRT.

RESULTS: Patients with chronic RV pacing and LBBB had similar intraventricular dyssynchrony, with opposing wall delays by tissue Doppler of 82 +/- 45 ms versus 87 +/- 63 ms and anteroseptum-to-posterior delays by speckle tracking of 225 +/- 142 ms, versus 211 +/- 107 ms, respectively. RV-paced patients, however, had greater interventricular dyssynchrony: 44 +/- 24 ms versus 35 +/- 21 ms (p < 0.01), which correlated with their greater QRS duration (p < 0.001). Sites of latest mechanical activation were most often posterior or lateral in both groups, but RV-paced patients had sites of earliest activation more often from the inferior-septum and apex (p < 0.05). EF response was similar in RV-paced and LBBB groups, and survival free from transplantation or mechanical support after CRT was similarly favorable as compared with failed CRT patients over 5 years (p < 0.01).

CONCLUSIONS: RV-paced patients, when compared with LBBB patients, had similar dyssynchronous patterns of mechanical activation and greater interventricular dyssynchrony. Importantly, RV-paced patients had similar EF response and long-term outcome as those with LBBB, which supports their candidacy for CRT.

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