Objectives: We sought to assess the prognostic implications of the evolution of restrictive left ventricular filling pattern (RFP) in dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM).
Background: Previous work has demonstrated that a RFP in DCM is associated with a poor prognosis. Few data are available on the prognostic implications of the evolution of this pattern.
Methods: The evolution of left ventricular filling was studied by Doppler echocardiography in 110 patients with DCM. According to the left ventricular filling pattern at presentation and after 3 months of treatment, the patients were classified into three groups: Group 1A (n = 24) had persistent restrictive filling; Group 1B (n = 29) had reversible restrictive filling; and Group 2 (n = 57) had nonrestrictive filling.
Results: During follow-up (41 +/- 20 months), mortality plus heart transplantations was significantly higher in Group 1A than in Groups 1B and 2 (p < 0.0001). On multivariate analysis, the model incorporating E wave deceleration time at 3 months was more powerful at predicting mortality with respect to this variable at baseline (p = 0.0039). Clinical improvement at 1 and 2 years was significantly more frequent in Groups 1B and 2 than in Group 1A (p < 0.0001 at 2 years).
Conclusions: In patients with DCM, the persistence of restrictive filling at 3 months is associated with a high mortality and transplantation rate. The patients with reversible restrictive filling have a high probability of improvement and excellent survival. Doppler echocardiographic reevaluation of these patients after 3 months of therapy gives additional prognostic information with respect to the initial study.