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    Tissue doppler imaging predicts improved systolic performance and reversed left ventricular remodeling during long-term cardiac resynchronization therapy

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    AbstractObjectivesWe sought to evaluate the long-term impact of cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) on left ventricular (LV) performance and remodeling using three-dimensional echocardiography and tissue Doppler imaging (TDI).BackgroundThree-dimensional echocardiography and TDI allow rapid and accurate evaluation of LV volumes and performance.MethodsTwenty-five consecutive patients with severe heart failure and bundle branch block who underwent biventricular pacemaker implantation were included. Before and after implantation of the pacemaker, three-dimensional echocardiography and TDI were performed. These examinations were repeated at outpatient visits every six months.ResultsFive patients (20%) died during one-year follow-up. In the remaining 20 patients, significant reductions in LV end-diastolic volume and LV end-systolic volume of 9.6 ± 14% and 16.5 ± 15%, respectively (p < 0.01), could be demonstrated during long-term follow-up. Accordingly, LV ejection fraction increased by 21.7 ± 18% (p < 0.01). According to a newly developed TDI technique—tissue tracking—all regional myocardial segments improved their longitudinal systolic shortening (p < 0.01). The extent of the LV base displaying delayed longitudinal contraction, as detected by TDI before pacemaker implantation, predicted long-term efficacy of CRT. The QRS duration failed to predict resynchronization efficacy.ConclusionsCardiac resynchronization significantly improved LV function and reversed LV remodeling during long-term follow-up. Patients likely to benefit from CRT can be identified by TDI before implantation of a biventricular pacemaker