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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Quantitative analysis of the morphology of secundum-type atrial septal defects and their dynamic change using transesophageal three-dimensional echocardiography.

BACKGROUND: A noninvasive method for the determination of size and spatial relationships of atrial septal defects to adjacent cardiac structures, which would be advantageous to those contemplating device closure, is described. The aim of the study was to examine the value of transesophageal three-dimensional echocardiography for this purpose. METHODS AND RESULTS: Three-dimensional reconstruction of transesophageal two-dimensional echocardiography was performed in 17 patients. Left-to-right shunt (by oximetry in 16 of 17 patients) was 2.4 to 16.2 L/min, and the Qp/QS ratio was 1.4 to 4. 7. The defect area of the atrial septal defect was measured throughout the whole cardiac cycle each 40 ms from the three-dimensional data set. Results were compared with shunt parameters by oximetry and with intraoperative measurements. Distances between atrial septal defect and mitral and tricuspid annulus and the orifices of the caval and pulmonary veins were also measured. The atrial septal defect area ranged from 0.2 to 2.4 cm2 (diastole) to 0.5 to 5.6 cm2 (systole). The maximal area at end-systole was 108% of the area at beginning of systole, and the minimal area at end-diastole was 43%. The defect area correlated significantly with the Qp/QS ratio (r=.70), and the maximal atrial septal defect diameters as measured by using three-dimensional echocardiography correlated well with intraoperative measurements (r=.87). Distances to mitral and tricuspid annulus and to the superior caval vein were determined in all patients. Distances to orifice of the inferior caval vein were measured in 12 patients, and orifices of right pulmonary veins were visible in 5 patients. CONCLUSIONS: Transesophageal three-dimensional echocardiography of atrial septal defects allows the determination of the instantaneous defect area and its dynamic changes and thus provides valuable information about the distances to adjacent cardiac structures. This may have clinical implications for the selection of patients suitable for interventional closure and for the assessment of procedural success.[1]


  1. Quantitative analysis of the morphology of secundum-type atrial septal defects and their dynamic change using transesophageal three-dimensional echocardiography. Franke, A., Kühl, H.P., Rulands, D., Jansen, C., Erena, C., Grabitz, R.G., Däbritz, S., Messmer, B.J., Flachskampf, F.A., Hanrath, P. Circulation (1997) [Pubmed]
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