Reversible De Novo Left Ventricular Trabeculations in Pregnant WomenCLINICAL PERSPECTIVE
Implications for the Diagnosis of Left Ventricular Noncompaction in Low-Risk Populations
Background—Patients with heart failure and chronic anemia frequently demonstrate left ventricular (LV) trabeculations, which may be compatible with the diagnosis of LV noncompaction. We used the pregnancy model, which is characterized by a reversible increase in cardiac preload and other changes in cardiac function, to assess the development of de novo LV trabeculations in women with morphologically normal hearts.
Methods and Results—One hundred two primigravida pregnant women were evaluated longitudinally with a series of echocardiograms in the first trimester, in the third trimester, and postpartum. Echocardiograms were analyzed according to established guidelines. Increased LV trabeculations and the presence of LV noncompaction were based on established criteria. Pregnancy was associated with an increased heart rate, stroke volume, and cardiac output, as well as increased LV volume and mass. During pregnancy, 26 women (25.4%) developed increased trabeculations. Eight women showed sufficient trabeculations to fulfill criteria for LV noncompaction. During the postpartum follow-up period of 24±3 months, 19 women (73%) demonstrated complete resolution of trabeculations, and 5 showed a marked reduction in the trabeculated layer.
Conclusions—Pregnancy induces de novo LV trabeculations in a significant proportion of women. The results suggest that LV trabeculations occur in response to increased LV loading conditions or other physiological responses to pregnancy and are not specific for LV noncompaction. These factors should be considered in the assessment of individuals with LV trabeculations outside the context of symptoms of heart failure or familial cardiomyopathy.
- ethnic groups
- isolated noncompaction of the ventricular myocardium
- Received January 8, 2014.
- Accepted May 30, 2014.
- © 2014 American Heart Association, Inc.