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J Am Coll Cardiol. 1993 Sep;22(3):808-15.

Restrictive left ventricular filling pattern in dilated cardiomyopathy assessed by Doppler echocardiography: clinical, echocardiographic and hemodynamic correlations and prognostic implications. Heart Muscle Disease Study Group.

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Department of Cardiology, Ospedale Maggiore, Trieste, Italy.



This study was undertaken to evaluate the frequency of restrictive left ventricular filling pattern in dilated cardiomyopathy, as well as its clinical and hemodynamic correlations and prognostic implications.


In dilated cardiomyopathy, as in other heart diseases, different left ventricular filling patterns were observed on Doppler echocardiography. Some patients showed a "restrictive filling pattern," similar to that associated with restrictive cardiomyopathy, characterized by predominant E waves and a shortened E deceleration time.


Pulsed Doppler transmitral curves were analyzed in 79 consecutive patients with dilated cardiomyopathy assigned to two study groups according to E deceleration time: group 1 (n = 36) had a restrictive left ventricular filling pattern (E deceleration time < 115 ms); group 2 (n = 43) had an E deceleration time > or = 115 ms.


Patients in group 1 were significantly younger, in a higher New York Heart Association functional class, more frequently had a third heart sound and had a higher left ventricular filling pressure at catheterization. In addition, they showed more severe left and right ventricular dysfunction and dilation, a larger left atrium and more severe mitral regurgitation. A restrictive filling pattern was associated at Doppler study with a higher E wave velocity, lower A wave velocity and higher E/A ratio. During a follow-up interval of 22 +/- 14 months, all 14 patients who subsequently died or required heart transplantation showed a restrictive left ventricular filling pattern. At multivariate analysis, E deceleration time was the most powerful independent prognostic indicator of poor outcome or transplantation.


Restrictive left ventricular filling pattern is frequent in dilated cardiomyopathy, is associated with more severe disease and is a powerful indicator of increased mortality risk and need for heart transplantation.

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