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J Cardiovasc Magn Reson. 2012 Jun 21;14:43. doi: 10.1186/1532-429X-14-43.

Inter-study reproducibility of cardiovascular magnetic resonance myocardial feature tracking.

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  • 1King's College London British Heart Foundation (BHF) Centre of Excellence, London, United Kingdom.



Cardiovascular magnetic resonance myocardial feature tracking (CMR-FT) is a recently described method of post processing routine cine acquisitions which aims to provide quantitative measurements of circumferentially and radially directed ventricular wall strain. Inter-study reproducibility is important for serial assessments however has not been defined for CMR-FT.


16 healthy volunteers were imaged 3 times within a single day. The first examination was performed at 0900 after fasting and was immediately followed by the second. The third, non-fasting scan, was performed at 1400.CMR-FT measures of segmental and global strain parameters were calculated. Left ventricular (LV) circumferential and radial strain were determined in the short axis orientation (Ecc(SAX) and Err(SAX) respectively). LV and right ventricular longitudinal strain and LV radial strain were determined from the 4-chamber orientation (Ell(LV), Ell(RV), and Err(LAX) respectively). LV volumes and function were also analysed.Inter-study reproducibility and study sample sizes required to demonstrate 5% changes in absolute strain were determined by comparison of the first and second exams. The third exam was used to determine whether diurnal variation affected reproducibility.


CMR-FT strain analysis inter-study reproducibility was variable. Global strain assessment was more reproducible than segmental analysis. Overall Ecc(SAX) was the most reproducible measure of strain: coefficient of variation (CV) 38% and 20.3% and intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) 0.68 (0.55-0.78) and 0.7 (0.32-0.89) for segmental and global analysis respectively. The least reproducible segmental measure was Ell(RV): CV 60% and ICC 0.56 (0.41-0.69) whilst the least reproducible global measure was Err(LAX): CV 33.3% and ICC 0.44 (0-0.77). Variable reproducibility was also reflected in the calculated sample sizes, which ranged from 11 (global Ecc(SAX)) to 156 subjects (segmental Ell(RV)). The reproducibility of LV volumes and function was excellent. There was no diurnal variation in global strain or LV volumetric measurements.


Inter-study reproducibility of CMR-FT varied between different parameters, as summarized above and was better for global rather than segmental analysis. It was not measurably affected by diurnal variation. CMR-FT may have potential for quantitative wall motion analysis with applications in patient management and clinical trials. However, inter-study reproducibility was relatively poor for segmental and long axis analyses of strain, which have yet to be validated, and may benefit from further development.

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