Estimation of mean left atrial pressure from transesophageal pulsed Doppler echocardiography of pulmonary venous flow.
To determine whether pulmonary venous flow and mitral inflow measured by transesophageal pulsed Doppler echocardiography can be used to estimate mean left atrial pressure (LAP), we prospectively studied 47 consecutive patients undergoing cardiovascular surgery. We correlated Doppler variables of pulmonary venous flow and mitral inflow with simultaneously obtained mean LAP and changes in pressure measured by left atrial or pulmonary artery catheters. Among the pulmonary venous flow variables, the systolic fraction (i.e., the systolic velocity-time integral expressed as a fraction of the sum of systolic and early diastolic velocity-time integrals) correlated most strongly with mean LAP (r = -0.88). Of the mitral inflow variables, the ratio of peak early diastolic to peak late diastolic mitral flow velocity correlated most strongly with mean LAP (r = 0.43), but this correlation was not as strong as that with the systolic fraction of pulmonary venous flow. Similarly, changes in the systolic fraction correlated more strongly with changes in mean LAP (r = -0.78) than did changes in the ratio of peak early diastolic to peak late diastolic mitral inflow velocity (r = 0.68). We conclude that in the surgical setting observed, pulmonary venous flow from transesophageal pulsed Doppler echocardiography can be used to estimate mean LAP. This technique may provide a rapid, simple, and relatively noninvasive means of gauging this variable in patients undergoing intraoperative transesophageal echocardiography.
- Copyright © 1990 by American Heart Association