Left ventricular diastolic function following myocardial infarction

Curr Heart Fail Rep. 2006 Dec;3(4):170-4. doi: 10.1007/s11897-006-0018-6.


An acute myocardial infarction causes a loss of contractile fibers which reduces systolic function. Parallel to the effect on systolic function, a myocardial infarction also impacts diastolic function, but this relationship is not as well understood. The two physiologic phases of diastole, active relaxation and passive filling, are both influenced by myocardial ischemia and infarction. Active relaxation is delayed following a myocardial infarction, whereas left ventricular stiffness changes depending on the extent of infarction and remodeling. Interstitial edema and fibrosis cause an increase in wall stiffness which is counteracted by dilation. The effect on diastolic function is correlated to an increased incidence of adverse outcomes. Moreover, patients with comorbid conditions that are associated with worse diastolic function tend to have more adverse outcomes after infarction. There are currently no treatments aimed specifically at treating diastolic dysfunction following a myocardial infarction, but several new drugs, including aldosterone antagonists, may offer promise.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Diastole / physiology
  • Humans
  • Myocardial Infarction / complications*
  • Myocardial Infarction / physiopathology
  • Ventricular Dysfunction, Left / etiology*