Age-related alterations of Doppler left ventricular filling indexes in normal subjects are independent of left ventricular mass, heart rate, contractility and loading conditions

J Am Coll Cardiol. 1991 Nov 1;18(5):1243-50. doi: 10.1016/0735-1097(91)90542-h.


The purpose of this study was to determine whether age-related alterations in Doppler diastolic filling indexes occur independent of cardiovascular disease and confounding physiologic variables. Ten old (62 to 73 years) and 10 young (21 to 32 years) healthy male volunteers were rigorously screened for cardiovascular disease and underwent comprehensive Doppler echocardiography, radionuclide ventriculography and invasive measurements of right heart and left atrial pressures. There were no differences between the two groups in the physiologic variables of left ventricular mass, volumes, ejection fraction, end-systolic wall stress, left atrial size, heart rate and right atrial, pulmonary artery, pulmonary capillary wedge and systemic arterial pressures. However, there were marked differences in Doppler left ventricular filling indexes. Compared with the young group, the old group had reduced peak early diastolic flow velocity (56 +/- 13 vs. 82 +/- 12 cm/s, p = 0.0002) and increased atrial diastolic flow velocity (59 +/- 14 vs. 43 +/- 10 cm/s, p = 0.009) and had a peak atrial/early flow velocity (A/E) ratio twice that of the young group (1.09 +/- 0.29 vs. 0.54 +/- 0.15, p less than 0.0001). Similar results were obtained for the time-velocity integrals of the peaks. Subjects in the old group also had a markedly reduced peak filling rate (274 +/- 62 vs. 448 +/- 152 ml/s, p = 0.004). In univariate and multivariate regression analyses, peak early and atrial flow velocities were not related to any of the physiologic variables measured once age was accounted for, although peak filling rate, a volumetric measure flow, was related to body surface area as well as age.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aging / physiology*
  • Diastole / physiology
  • Echocardiography, Doppler*
  • Heart Rate / physiology
  • Hemodynamics / physiology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Myocardial Contraction / physiology
  • Pressure
  • Radionuclide Ventriculography
  • Reference Values
  • Regression Analysis
  • Ventricular Function, Left / physiology*