Global left ventricular (LV) ejection fraction (LVEF) has been used as a measure of improvement in LV function following cell therapy. Although the impact of cell therapy on LVEF in short- and long-term follow-up has been generally positive, there is concern that research evaluating regional therapeutics (e.g., cell or gene therapy) may require analysis of regional LV function localized to the site of intervention. Regional LV assessment is traditionally performed with qualitative or quantitative analysis of wall thickening within 16 myocardial segments, but advances in noninvasive imaging permit an increasingly more detailed and accurate evaluation of LV function. Wall-thickness measurements can now include evaluation of over 1,000 myocardial segments. In addition to higher resolution measures of wall thickening, automated assessments of myocardial segment deformation, such as strain imaging, exist. Strain imaging allows for direct evaluation of the mechanical properties that may improve following regional therapeutic intervention. Improvements in regional LV function may also be assessed by determining regional ejection fraction (EF). Regional EF offers the advantage of summarizing the end result of all of the complex deformations in the adjacent myocardial segments. Although regional EF and strain imaging, as compared with wall thickening, enhance detection of improvement in complex measures of regional myocardial function, it remains unclear whether such measures are better able to predict meaningful improvement in clinical outcomes.
Copyright © 2011 American College of Cardiology Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.