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JACC Cardiovasc Imaging. 2009 May;2(5):648-55. doi: 10.1016/j.jcmg.2009.03.001.

Left ventricular torsion: an expanding role in the analysis of myocardial dysfunction.

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  • 1Department of Physics and Medical Technology, VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, the Netherlands.


During left ventricular (LV) torsion, the base rotates in an overall clockwise direction and the apex rotates in a counterclockwise direction when viewed from apex to base. LV torsion is followed by rapid untwisting, which contributes to ventricular filling. Because LV torsion is directly related to fiber orientation, it might depict subclinical abnormalities in heart function. Recently, ultrasound speckle tracking was introduced for quantification of LV torsion. This fast, widely available technique may contribute to a more rapid introduction of LV torsion as a clinical tool for detection of myocardial dysfunction. However, knowledge of the exact function and structure of the heart is fundamental for understanding the value of LV torsion. LV torsion has been investigated with different measurement methods during the past 2 decades, using cardiac magnetic resonance as the gold standard. The results obtained over the years are helpful for developing a standardized method to quantify LV torsion and have facilitated the interpretation and value of LV torsion before it can be used as a clinical tool.

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