Secondary mitral regurgitation (MR) develops as a consequence of left ventricular (LV) dilatation and dysfunction, which complicates its evaluation and management. The goal of this article is to review the assessment of secondary MR with special emphasis on quantification and analysis of LV volume data. At the present time, the optimal method for making these measurements appears to be cardiac MRI. In severe MR (both primary and secondary), the regurgitant fraction (RF) exceeds 50%, and as a result, the LV end diastolic volume (EDV) is increased. In secondary MR, the ejection fraction is depressed (generally <40%) and despite an RF >50%, the regurgitant volume (RegV) rarely meets the current published criteria for severe MR (>60 mL). The ratio of the RegV to EDV, which is very low in secondary MR, reflects the effect of the RegV on the ventricle and it may be predictive of the fractional change in LV size that can be expected after correction of MR. Accurate measurement of the volumetric parameters is essential to proper management of patients with secondary MR.
- heart failure
- mitral regurgitation
- cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR) imaging
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