Association of left atrial volume with mortality among ESRD patients with left ventricular hypertrophy referred for kidney transplantation

Am J Kidney Dis. 2010 Jun;55(6):1088-96. doi: 10.1053/j.ajkd.2009.12.033. Epub 2010 Mar 25.


Background: Left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH) is common in patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD) and an independent risk factor for premature cardiovascular death. Left atrial volume (LAV), measured using echocardiography, predicts death in patients with ESRD. Cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) imaging is a volume-independent method of accurately assessing cardiac structure and function in patients with ESRD.

Study design: Single-center prospective observational study to assess the determinants of all-cause mortality, particularly LAV, in a cohort of ESRD patients with LVH, defined using CMR imaging.

Setting & participants: 201 consecutive ESRD patients with LVH (72.1% men; mean age, 51.6 +/- 11.7 years) who had undergone pretransplant cardiovascular assessment were identified using CMR imaging between 2002-2008. LVH was defined as left ventricular mass index >84.1 g/m(2) (men) or >74.6 g/m(2) (women) based on published normal left ventricle dimensions for CMR imaging. Maximal LAV was calculated using the biplane area-length method at the end of left ventricle systole and corrected for body surface area.

Predictors: CMR abnormalities, including LAV.

Outcome: All-cause mortality.

Results: 54 patients died (11 after transplant) during a median follow-up of 3.62 years. Median LAV was 30.4 mL/m(2) (interquartile range, 26.2-58.1). Patients were grouped into high (median or higher) or low (less than median) LAV. There were no significant differences in heart rate and mitral valve Doppler early to late atrial peak velocity ratio. Increased LAV was associated with higher mortality. Kaplan-Meier survival analysis showed poorer survival in patients with higher LAV (log rank P = 0.01). High LAV and left ventricular systolic dysfunction conferred similar risk and were independent predictors of death using multivariate analysis.

Limitations: Only patients undergoing pretransplant cardiac assessment are included. Limited assessment of left ventricular diastolic function.

Conclusions: Higher LAV and left ventricular systolic dysfunction are independent predictors of death in ESRD patients with LVH.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / epidemiology
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Heart Atria / pathology*
  • Humans
  • Hypertrophy, Left Ventricular / physiopathology*
  • Kaplan-Meier Estimate
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / mortality*
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / surgery*
  • Kidney Transplantation*
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Organ Size
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Prospective Studies
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Ventricular Dysfunction, Left / physiopathology