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A method for the morphological analysis of the regurgitant mitral valve using three dimensional echocardiography
  1. A Macnab,
  2. N P Jenkins,
  3. I Ewington,
  4. B J M Bridgewater,
  5. T L Hooper,
  6. D L Greenhalgh,
  7. M R Patrick,
  8. S G Ray
  1. Regional Cardiothoracic Unit, Wythenshawe Hospital, Manchester, UK
  1. Correspondence to:
    Dr Anita Macnab
    7 Birchlea, Altrincham, Cheshire WA15 8WF, UK;


Background: Atrial en-face reconstructions are commonly used to assess mitral valve morphology in three dimensional (3D) echocardiography but may miss important abnormalities.

Objective: To present a systematic method for the analysis of the regurgitant mitral valve using a combination of en-face and longitudinal views for better anatomical evaluation.

Methods: Detailed 3D assessment was done on 58 patients undergoing mitral valve repair. En-face and longitudinal views were compared for detection and location of primary pathology. The quality of acquisitions under general anaesthesia and sedation was also compared.

Results: Recognition of valve structure was significantly better with longitudinal reconstruction for both mitral leaflets but not for the commissures. Accurate identification of pathology was possible in 95% cases, compared with 50% for en-face reconstruction (p < 0.001). There was no significant difference between imaging under sedation and anaesthesia.

Conclusion: En-face reconstructions alone are inadequate. Additional longitudinal reconstructions are necessary to ensure full inspection of valve morphology.

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