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Pediatr Cardiol. 2011 Feb;32(2):154-9. doi: 10.1007/s00246-010-9834-2. Epub 2010 Nov 17.

Early echocardiographic findings in β-thalassemia intermedia patients using standard and tissue Doppler methods.

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Division of Pediatric Cardiology, Department of Pediatrics, Nemazee Hospital, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, 7193711351, Shiraz, Iran.


Heart complications are among the serious problems of patients with β-thalassemia intermedia. This study aimed to evaluate myocardial function in these patients. Clinical parameters and both standard Doppler and pulsed Doppler tissue imaging parameters were compared in 51 β-thalassemia intermedia patients (mean age, 17.05 ± 5.8 years) and 20 normal subjects (mean age, 17.81 ± 7.35 years, p = 0.98). In 11 patients (21.5%), pulmonary artery hypertension was detected. M-mode echocardiographic findings such as ejection fraction and fractional shortening did not show statistically significant changes (p > 0.005). Pulsed Doppler showed a significant difference in the early (E) to late diastolic (A) velocity ratio of the tricuspid and mitral valve between the patients and the control subjects (p < 0.05). In the pulsed tissue Doppler study, the peak systolic velocity of the septum (Ss), the peak atrial velocity of the septum (Aas), the peak systolic velocity of the tricuspid annulus (St), the peak early diastolic velocity of the tricuspid annulus (Eat), and the peak late diastolic velocity of the tricuspid annulus (Aat) were increased significantly (p < 0.05). The pulse tissue Doppler of the lateral mitral annulus did not change significantly (p > 0.005). The peak systolic velocity of the posterior wall and the peak late diastolic velocity of the anterior wall changed significantly (p < 0.05). This study showed that β-thalassemia intermedia patients with normal M-mode and two-dimensional echocardiography had statistically significant changes in pulsed Doppler and pulsed tissue Doppler imaging.

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