Background: Information regarding the prevalence and determinants of cardiac structure and function (systolic and diastolic) among the various Hispanic background groups in the United States is limited.
Methods and results: The Echocardiographic Study of Latinos (ECHO-SOL) ancillary study recruited 1,824 participants through a stratified-sampling process representative of the population-based Hispanic Communities Health Study - Study of Latinos (HCHS-SOL) across four sites (Bronx, NY; Chicago, Ill; San Diego, Calif; Miami, Fla). The HCHS-SOL baseline cohort did not include an echo exam. ECHO-SOL added the echocardiographic assessment of cardiac structure and function to an array of existing HCHS-SOL baseline clinical, psychosocial, and socioeconomic data and provides sufficient statistical power for comparisons among the Hispanic subgroups. Standard two-dimensional (2D) echocardiography protocol, including M-mode, spectral, color and tissue Doppler study was performed. The main objectives were to: 1) characterize cardiac structure and function and its determinants among Hispanics and Hispanic subgroups; and 2) determine the contributions of specific psychosocial factors (acculturation and familismo) to cardiac structure and function among Hispanics.
Conclusion: We describe the design, methods and rationale of currently the largest and most comprehensive study of cardiac structure and function exclusively among US Hispanics. ECHO-SOL aims to enhance our understanding of Hispanic cardiovascular health as well as help untangle the relative importance of Hispanic subgroup heterogeneity and sociocultural factors on cardiac structure and function.