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Circulation. 2002 Apr 2;105(13):1602-8.

Tissue Doppler imaging differentiates physiological from pathological pressure-overload left ventricular hypertrophy in rats.

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INSERM E9920, Rouen University, Rouen, France.



The myocardial velocity gradient (MVG) is a recent index of regional myocardial function derived from endocardial and epicardial velocities obtained by tissue Doppler imaging (TDI). This index might be useful for discriminating between physiological and pathological left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH) and for documenting the early transition from compensated LVH to heart failure. We sought to compare MVG measured across the left ventricular posterior wall between normal rats and rats with physiological (exercise) and pathological (pressure-overload) LVH.


Wistar rats were assigned to one of the following groups: sedentary, exercise (swimming), and 2-month or 9-month abdominal aortic banding. Compared with sedentary rats, exercise and 2-month banding led to similar and significant LVH. After 2-month banding, conventional parameters of systolic function (left ventricular fractional shortening and dP/dt(max)) were not affected. However, systolic and diastolic MVG were similar in exercise and sedentary rats but were significantly lower in rats with aortic banding. Aortic debanding after 2 months led to a full recovery of MVG, whereas MVG remained decreased when debanding was performed after 9 months.


Myocardial contraction and relaxation assessed by TDI were impaired in pressure-overload LVH but not in exercise LVH. Therefore, TDI is more sensitive than conventional echocardiography for assessing myocardial dysfunction in pressure-overload LVH and for predicting early recovery in myocardial function after loading conditions normalization.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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