Right Ventricular Global Longitudinal Strain and Outcomes in Heart Failure with Preserved Ejection Fraction

Right ventricular (RV) strain has emerged as an accurate tool for RV function assessment and is a powerful predictor of survival in patients with heart failure with reduced ejection fraction. However, its prognostic impact in patients with heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF) remains unclear. The aim of this study was to compare the prognostic value of RV global longitudinal strain (RVGLS) by two-dimensional speckle-tracking echocardiographic (STE) imaging in patients with HFpEF against conventional RV function parameters.

..Mean STE RVGLS was significantly altered in patients with HFpEF compared with control subjects (−21.7 ± 4.9% vs −25.9 ± 4.2%, P < .001). STE RVGLS correlated well with RV ejection fraction by cardiac magnetic resonance (r = −0.617, P < .001). Twenty-eight patients with HFpEF (19%) had impaired STE RVGLS (>−17.5%). During a mean follow-up period of 30 ± 9 months, 91 patients with HFpEF (62%) reached the primary end point. A baseline model was created using independent predictors of the primary end point: New York Heart Association functional class III or IV, hemoglobin level, estimated glomerular filtration rate, and the presence of moderate or severe tricuspid regurgitation.

Impaired STE RVGLS provided significant additional prognostic value over this model (χ2 to enter = 7.85, P = .005). Impaired tricuspid annular plane systolic excursion and fractional area change, however, did not.

In patients with HFpEF, impaired RVGLS has strong prognostic value. STE RVGLS should be considered for systematic evaluation of RV function to identify patients at high risk for adverse events.