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Am J Cardiol. 2011 Aug 1;108(3):465-70. doi: 10.1016/j.amjcard.2011.03.070. Epub 2011 May 19.

Cardiac structure and function in persons 85 years of age.

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Heart Institute, Hadassah-Hebrew University Medical Center, Hebrew University Hadassah Medical School, Jerusalem, Israel.


Individuals aged >85 years constitute the world's most rapidly growing age group. Despite the rapid growth of this population and its high incidence of cardiovascular morbidity, normative data concerning cardiac structure and function are limited. The objective of this study was to define cardiac structure and function in an age-homogenous, community-dwelling population of subjects born in 1920 and 1921. Subjects were recruited from the Jerusalem Longitudinal Cohort Study. Echocardiography was performed using a portable echocardiograph at the subject's place of residence. Standard echocardiographic assessment of cardiac structure and function was performed. Four hundred fifty subjects (219 men, 231 women) were enrolled in the study. The cohort exhibited large left atrial volumes (64.6 ± 26 ml) and high left ventricular (LV) mass indexes (122 ± 36 g/m(2)) with normal LV volumes. Ejection fractions were preserved (55.3 ± 10.2%), but tissue Doppler s-wave velocities (lateral 7.8 ± 2.1 cm/s, septal 6.7 ± 1.9 cm/s) were reduced. Reduced tissue Doppler e waves (lateral 7.3 ± 2.2 cm/s, septal 6.2 ± 2 cm/s) and elevated E/e' ratios (12.2 ± 4.9) indicated significantly impaired diastolic function. In conclusion, the findings of this study demonstrate a high prevalence of left atrial enlargement, elevated LV mass, evidence of LV systolic dysfunction with preserved ejection fractions, and significant LV diastolic dysfunction in a community-dwelling cohort of 85-year-olds. The finding of elevated E/e' ratios in a subset free of known cardiovascular disease should be considered when clinical assessment of LV diastolic dysfunction in this age group is performed.

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