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Am J Cardiol. 2007 Aug 15;100(4):731-5. Epub 2007 Jun 27.

Prevalence and correlates of septal delayed contrast enhancement in patients with pulmonary hypertension.

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The Zena and Michael A. Wiener Cardiovascular Institute and Marie-Josee and Henry R. Kravis Center for Cardiovascular Health, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, New York, USA.


Using cardiac magnetic resonance, the presence of myocardial delayed contrast enhancement (DCE) has been described in the ventricular septum at the level of the right ventricular insertion points in patients with pulmonary hypertension (PH). The aim of this study was to investigate the prevalence, extent, and correlates of this finding. Septal DCE was evaluated in 55 patients with known or suspected PH of various causes. The extent of DCE was estimated visually with an insertion enhancement score (range 0 to 4) and quantified as DCE mass. The results were correlated with cine magnetic resonance and right-sided cardiac catheterization. Predictors of DCE were investigated using multivariate analysis. PH at rest was present in 42 patients (group 1) and absent in 13 (group 2). DCE was noted in 41 patients (97%) in group 1 and 3 (23%) in group 2 (p <0.0001). The extent of DCE was higher in group 1 than group 2 (median insertion enhancement score 3 vs 0, median DCE mass 8.7 vs 0 g, respectively; p <0.0001 for both). The extent of DCE showed moderate to good univariate correlations (r = 0.5 to 0.73) with pulmonary pressures and with right ventricular volumes, mass, and ejection fractions. In multivariate analysis, systolic pulmonary pressure was the only predictor of DCE. In conclusion, the presence of septal DCE at the right ventricular insertion points is common in PH of different causes, and the level of systolic pulmonary pressure elevation appears to be the main determinant of this finding.

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