Reproducibility of quantitative two-dimensional echocardiography

Am Heart J. 1988 Feb;115(2):425-31. doi: 10.1016/0002-8703(88)90491-7.


In order to assess reproducibility of quantitative planimetry, three physicians trained in two-dimensional echocardiography performed five successive studies on one another over 2 weeks (30 total studies). Then each physician traced each study (90 total tracings) for left ventricular and atrial volumes and ejection fraction by means of a modification of Simpson's rule, and left ventricular mass and average wall thickness by means of a truncated ellipsoid formula. Calculation of intertechnician variability, intertracer variability, and 95% confidence limits showed that measurements of volumes were less reproducible than measurements of ejection fraction, average wall thickness, and mass. Mean intertracer variability of 15% exceeded mean intertechnician variability of 11%; this disparity was magnified in the subject who was technically difficult to image. Ninety-five percent confidence limits were: ejection fraction +/- 7%, average wall thickness +/- 9%, left ventricular mass +/- 12%, left ventricular end-diastolic volume +/- 11%, stroke volume +/- 14%, left ventricular end-systolic volume +/- 15%, and left atrial volume +/- 19%. Reproducible planimetry data can be obtained in normal hearts with the use of a protocol for quantitative imaging and planimetry.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Echocardiography / methods
  • Echocardiography / standards*
  • Heart / anatomy & histology
  • Humans
  • Stroke Volume