Left Atrial Stiffness Index Independently Predicts Exercise Intolerance and Quality of Life in Older, Obese Patients With Heart Failure With Preserved Ejection Fraction.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

BACKGROUND: Heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF) is the fastest growing form of HF and is associated with high morbidity and mortality. The primary chronic symptom in HFpEF is exercise intolerance, associated with reduced quality of life. Emerging evidence implicates left atrial (LA) dysfunction as an important pathophysiologic mechanism. Here we extend prior observations by relating LA dysfunction to peak oxygen uptake (peak VO2), physical function (distance walked in 6 minutes [6MWD]) and quality of life (Kansas City Cardiomyopathy Questionnaire). METHODS AND RESULTS: We compared 75 older, obese, patients with HFpEF with 53 healthy age-matched controls. LA strain was assessed by magnetic resonance cine imaging using feature tracking. LA function was defined according to its 3 distinct phases, with the LA serving as a reservoir during systole, as a conduit during early diastole, and as a booster pump at the end of diastole. The LA stiffness index was calculated as the ratio of early mitral inflow velocity-to-early annular tissue velocity (E/e', by Doppler ultrasound examination) and LA reservoir strain. HFpEF had a decreased reservoir strain (16.4 ± 4.4% vs 18.2 ± 3.5%, P = .018), lower conduit strain (7.7 ± 3.3% vs 9.1 ± 3.4%, P = .028), and increased stiffness index (0.86 ± 0.39 vs 0.53 ± 0.18, P < .001), as well as decreased peak VO2, 6MWD, and lower quality of life. Increased LA stiffness was independently associated with impaired peak VO2 (β = 9.0 ± 1.6, P < .001), 6MWD (β = 117 ± 22, P = .003), and Kansas City Cardiomyopathy Questionnaire score (β = -23 ± 5, P = .001), even after adjusting for clinical covariates. CONCLUSIONS: LA stiffness is independently associated with impaired exercise tolerance and quality of life and may be an important therapeutic target in obese HFpEF. REGISTRATION: NCT00959660.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Singleton, MJ; Nelson, MB; Samuel, TJ; Kitzman, DW; Brubaker, P; Haykowsky, MJ; Upadhya, B; Chen, H; Nelson, MD

Published Date

  • April 2022

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 28 / 4

Start / End Page

  • 567 - 575

PubMed ID

  • 34774747

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC9018494

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1532-8414

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.cardfail.2021.10.010


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States