Acute Effect of Treatment of Mitral Stenosis on Left Atrium Function
BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES Left atrial (LA) fibrosis is a main determinant of LA remodeling and development of atrial fibrillation. However, non-invasive prediction of LA fibrosis is challenging. We investigated whether preoperative LA strain as measured by speckle tracking echocardiography could predict the degree of LA fibrosis and LA reverse remodeling after mitral valve (MV) surgery. SUBJECTS AND METHODS Speckle tracking echocardiography and LA volume measurements were performed in 50 patients one day before MV surgery. LA tissues were obtained during the surgery, and the degrees of their interstitial fibroses were measured. LA volume measurements were repeated within 30 days after surgery (n=50) and 1-year later (n=39). RESULTS Left atrial global strain was significantly correlated with the degree of LA fibrosis (r=-0.55, p<0.001), and its correlation was independent of age, underlying rhythm, presence of rheumatic heart disease and type of predominant MV disease (B=-1.37, 95% confidence interval -2.32 - -0.41, p=0.006). The degree of LA fibrosis was significantly correlated with early (r=-0.337, p=0.017) and 1-year (r=-0.477, p=0.002) percent LA volume reduction after MV surgery, but LA global strain was not significant. CONCLUSION Left atrial strain as measured by speckle tracking echocardiography might be helpful for predicting the degree of LA fibrosis in patients with MV disease.