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J Am Soc Echocardiogr. 2018 Mar;31(3):289-296. doi: 10.1016/j.echo.2017.09.003. Epub 2017 Oct 27.

Contrast-Enhanced Echocardiography Has the Greatest Impact in Patients with Reduced Ejection Fractions.

Author information

1
Cardiovascular Division, Department of Medicine, Perelman School of Medicine of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Department of Cardiology, Renji Hospital, School of Medicine, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai, China.
2
Cardiovascular Division, Department of Medicine, Perelman School of Medicine of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
3
Cardiovascular Division, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, Washington.
4
Cardiovascular Division, Department of Medicine, Perelman School of Medicine of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Electronic address: yuchi.han@uphs.upenn.edu.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Contrast-enhanced echocardiography (CE) helps to improve image quality in patients with suboptimal acoustic windows. Despite current recommendations, contrast use remains low. The aim of this study was to identify populations that would benefit more from contrast use.

METHODS:

A total of 176 subjects (137 men; mean age, 60.8 ± 13.7 years) with technically difficult transthoracic echocardiographic studies who received clinically indicated intravenous contrast were prospectively studied. The impact on clinical decision making (including alterations in medical therapy, referral, imaging, or clinical procedures) was evaluated.

RESULTS:

The use of CE enabled biplane left ventricular (LV) ejection fraction measurement in 97.2% of studies and the interpretation of regional wall motion in 95% of studies. CE allowed definitive assessment of the presence or absence of LV thrombus in 99% of the cases. In the 174 patients whose ordering physicians could be reached at the time of image interpretation, changes in management occurred in 51% of subjects. There was no difference in the proportion of management changes between inpatients and outpatients (60.0% vs 48.1%, P = .225). Subjects with heart failure, cardiomyopathy, and arrhythmia had a higher proportion of changes (61.4% vs 44.2% [P = .031], 62.5% vs 45.0% [P = .028], and 72.0% vs 47.7% [P = .030], respectively). The proportion of management change after CE increased as pre-CE estimated ejection fraction decreased. Logistic regression showed that pre-CE estimated LV ejection fraction < 50% was the only significant predictor of change of management after contrast (P = .004).

CONCLUSIONS:

The use of CE has a significant impact on clinical decision making in patients with suboptimal acoustic windows, especially in those with depressed pre-CE LV ejection fractions.

KEYWORDS:

Contrast echocardiography; Impact; Left ventricular ejection fraction; Outpatients

PMID:
29111122
DOI:
10.1016/j.echo.2017.09.003

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