Altered diastolic function and aortic stiffness in Alzheimer's disease

Clin Interv Aging. 2014 Jul 16:9:1115-21. doi: 10.2147/CIA.S63337. eCollection 2014.


Background: Alzheimer's disease (AD) is closely linked to cardiovascular risk factors.

Methods: Echocardiographic studies were performed, including left ventricular diastolic functions, left and right atrial conduction times, and arterial stiffness parameters, namely stiffness index, pressure-strain elastic modulus, and distensibility, on 29 patients with AD and 24 age-matched individuals with normal cognitive function.

Results: The peak mitral flow velocity of the early rapid filling wave (E) was lower, and the peak velocity of the late filling wave caused by atrial contraction (A), deceleration time of peak E velocity, and isovolumetric relaxation time were higher in the AD group. The early myocardial peak (Ea) velocity was significantly lower in AD patients, whereas the late diastolic (Aa) velocity and E/Ea ratio were similar between the two groups. In Alzheimer patients, stiffness index and pressure-strain elastic modulus were higher, and distensibility was significantly lower in the AD group compared to the control. Interatrial electromechanical delay was significantly longer in the AD group.

Conclusion: Our findings suggest that patients with AD are more likely to have diastolic dysfunction, higher atrial conduction times, and increased arterial stiffness compared to the controls of same sex and similar age.

Keywords: atrial conduction time; diastolic dysfunction.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Alzheimer Disease / diagnostic imaging
  • Alzheimer Disease / epidemiology
  • Alzheimer Disease / physiopathology*
  • Aorta, Abdominal / physiopathology
  • Aortic Diseases / diagnostic imaging
  • Aortic Diseases / epidemiology
  • Aortic Diseases / physiopathology*
  • Diastole / physiology*
  • Echocardiography
  • Female
  • Heart Atria
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Risk Factors
  • Vascular Stiffness / physiology*