Sex-based differences in late gadolinium enhancement among patients with acute myocarditis

Eur J Radiol. 2023 Sep:166:110980. doi: 10.1016/j.ejrad.2023.110980. Epub 2023 Jul 13.


Objective: The aims of our study were to investigate the sex differences in late gadolinium enhancement (LGE) using cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) in a single-centre cohort of consecutive patients with acute myocarditis (AM).

Method: This retrospective study performed CMR scans in 135 consecutive patients with AM that met the Lake Louise criteria. On CMR, LV ventricular strain functions were performed on conventional cine SSFP sequences. Besides myocardial strain measurements, myocardial scar location, extension, and size were assigned and quantified by LGE imaging.

Results: There was no difference in age (age 42.51 ± 19.64 years vs 40.92 ± 19.94 years; p = 0.74) and cardiovascular risk profile between women and men. Despite similar comorbidities, women were more like to present with dyspnea (p = 0.001). Women demonstrated higher prevalence of septal LGE (p = 0.004) and increased global circumferential strain parameters (p = 0.008) in comparison with men. In multivariate analysis, female sex remained an independent determinant of septal LGE (β coefficient = -0.520, p = 0.001).

Conclusion: This is the first study reporting sex differences in LGE localization in AM. Women have more septal LGE involvement independent of age, cardiovascular risk factors, and CMR parameters. These findings further emphasize the sex-based differences in cardiovascular diseases.

Keywords: LGE; Myocarditis; Sex differences; Strain.

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Adult
  • Contrast Media
  • Female
  • Gadolinium
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Cine / methods
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Myocarditis* / diagnostic imaging
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sex Characteristics
  • Ventricular Function, Left
  • Young Adult


  • Contrast Media
  • Gadolinium