Left Ventricular Layer-Specific Myocardial Strains in Children with Recovered Primary Dilated Cardiomyopathy: What Lies Beneath the Iceberg?

Pediatr Cardiol. 2020 Jan;41(1):101-107. doi: 10.1007/s00246-019-02228-7. Epub 2019 Nov 3.


We aimed to detect residual cardiac dysfunction-if any-in children with recovered primary dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) by using the left ventricular (LV) layer-specific myocardial strains. Fifty children with recovered primary DCM both clinically and echocardiographically were included as the patient group. Fifty healthy children of matched age and sex served as the control group. Echocardiographic evaluation was performed for all included children in the form of conventional echocardiography, tissue Doppler imaging (TDI), two-dimensional speckle tracking echocardiography (2D-STE), and LV layer-specific myocardial strain. Both LV systolic and diastolic functions measured by conventional echocardiography were similar in children with recovered DCM and the control group. There was a significant reduction in LV systolic and diastolic functions measured by TDI in the patient group. Moreover, there was a significant reduction of LV global longitudinal systolic strain (GLSS) by 2D-STE in children with recovered DCM. Interestingly, there was a significant reduction of LV layer-specific myocardial strain from endocardium to epicardium in children with recovered DCM compared to the healthy control. There was a significant positive correlation between different layer-specific myocardial strains and LV GLSS, LV ejection fraction, and LV peak systolic velocity. Left ventricular layer-specific myocardial strain can be a promising tool for early identifications of LV dysfunction in children with DCM. Subtle cardiac dysfunction is present in patients with recovered DCM, so long-term follow-up is recommended in these patients.

Keywords: Children; Dilated cardiomyopathy; Layer-specific strain.

MeSH terms

  • Cardiomyopathy, Dilated / physiopathology*
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Echocardiography / methods
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Myocardium / pathology*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Assessment
  • Ventricular Dysfunction, Left / diagnosis
  • Ventricular Dysfunction, Left / physiopathology*