Determinants and Prognostic Significance of Serial Right Heart Function Changes in Patients With Cardiac Amyloidosis

Nowell M Fine, James A White, Victor Jimenez-Zepeda, Jonathan G Howlett
Canadian Journal of Cardiology 2020, 36 (3): 432-440

BACKGROUND: Right heart function is an important prognostic determinant in cardiac amyloidosis. In this study we characterized serial changes in right and left heart function and evaluated their prognostic significance.

METHODS: Cardiac amyloidosis patients with baseline and follow-up echocardiograms were included. Right and left heart function measured at baseline, 1 year, and most recent follow-up were compared and correlated with all-cause mortality or cardiovascular hospitalization.

RESULTS: Ninety-three patients were included; 36 (39%) with light chain amyloidosis and 57 (61%) with transthyretin amyloidosis. Among measures of right heart function for the study population and light chain and transthyretin amyloidosis subtypes, only absolute right ventricular (RV) free wall longitudinal strain (FWLS) changed significantly from baseline to 1 year and most recent follow-up echocardiogram. After a median of 26 months (range, 14-35 months), 21 (22%) patients died and 17 (18%) had a cardiovascular hospitalization. Baseline RV FWLS was significantly associated with the primary endpoint (hazard ratio, 1.2 per % change; 95% confidence interval, 0.8-2.6; P < 0.01), whereas change from baseline to 1 year was not for any measure of right heart function. Baseline left ventricular (LV) global longitudinal strain (GLS) and 1 year change were significantly associated with the primary end point. Change in RV FWLS at 1 year was significantly correlated with baseline LV GLS (r = 0.68; P = 0.01) and change at 1 year follow-up (r = 0.72; P < 0.01).

CONCLUSIONS: In cardiac amyloidosis patients, baseline RV FWLS was associated with adverse outcomes whereas changes at follow-up was not. Change in RV FWLS was significantly correlated with baseline and follow-up change in LV GLS, possibly reflecting progressive biventricular amyloid deposition.

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