In this study we explored the use of continuous wave Doppler echocardiography guided by simultaneous two-dimensional echocardiographic imaging as a method for noninvasively estimating pressure gradients in patients with discrete forms of left ventricular outflow tract obstruction. We studied 16 children, ages 6 months to 17 years, with valvular aortic stenosis (n = 12) or with discrete subaortic stenosis (n = 4) and compared maximal Doppler velocities in the aorta with pressure gradients obtained at cardiac catheterization. Examinations could be performed from the suprasternal notch view or from the apical left ventricular outflow tract view with equal accuracy for the study of flow in the left ventricular outflow tract, and results were comparable in both views. With a simplified Bernoulli relationship (gradient = 4 x [maximal velocity]), results suggested that Doppler echocardiography could be used to predict the severity of obstruction in our patients with a correlation coefficient of r = .94 (SEE ± 7.5 mm Hg) between Doppler-estimated gradients and gradients obtained at catheterization. The method appears promising for initial evaluation and for serial management of patients with discrete forms of left ventricular outflow tract obstruction.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
- Physiology (medical)