Pulmonary Vein Doppler Patterns in Infants with Single Right Ventricle Anomalies After Initial Staged Palliations

Pediatr Cardiol. 2017 Aug;38(6):1288-1295. doi: 10.1007/s00246-017-1660-3. Epub 2017 Jun 19.


The aim of this study was to describe serial changes in echocardiographic Doppler pulmonary vein flow (PVF) patterns in infants with single right ventricle (RV) anomalies enrolled in the Single Ventricle Reconstruction trial. Measurement of PVF peak systolic (S) and diastolic (D) velocities, velocity time integrals (VTI), S/D peak velocity and VTI ratios, and frequency of atrial reversal (Ar) waves were made at three postoperative time points in 261 infants: early post-Norwood, pre-stage II surgery, and 14 months. Indices were compared over time, between initial shunt type [modified Blalock-Taussig shunt (MBTS) and right ventricle-to-pulmonary artery shunt (RVPAS)] and in relation to clinical outcomes. S velocities and VTI increased over time while D wave was stable, resulting in increasing S/D peak velocity and VTI ratios, with a median post-Norwood S/D VTI ratio of 1.14 versus 1.38 at pre-stage II and 1.89 at 14 months (P < 0.0001 between intervals). MBTS subjects had significantly higher S/D peak velocity and VTI ratios compared to RVPAS at the post-Norwood and pre-stage II time points (P < 0.0001) but not by 14 months. PVF patterns did not correlate with survival or hospitalization course at 1 year. PVF patterns after Norwood palliation differ from normal infants by having a dominant systolic pattern throughout infancy. PVF differences based upon shunt type resolve by 14 months and did not correlate with clinical outcomes. This study describes normative values and variations in PVF for infants with a single RV from shunt-dependent pulmonary blood flow to cavopulmonary blood flow.

Keywords: Echocardiography; Pulmonary vein flow; Single right ventricle.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Anastomosis, Surgical
  • Blalock-Taussig Procedure
  • Cardiovascular Surgical Procedures
  • Echocardiography, Doppler*
  • Heart Defects, Congenital / diagnostic imaging*
  • Heart Defects, Congenital / physiopathology*
  • Heart Defects, Congenital / surgery
  • Heart Ventricles / surgery
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Norwood Procedures
  • Palliative Care*
  • Pulmonary Artery / surgery
  • Pulmonary Veins / diagnostic imaging*
  • Pulmonary Veins / physiology
  • Pulmonary Veins / physiopathology*
  • Pulmonary Veins / surgery
  • Regional Blood Flow / physiology
  • Retrospective Studies