The Prognostic Importance of Impaired Systolic Function in Heart Failure with Preserved Ejection Fraction and the Impact of Spironolactone
Background—Impairment in left ventricular (LV) systolic function has been described in heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF), but its prognostic relevance is not known. We determined whether LV longitudinal strain (LS) is predictive of cardiovascular (CV) outcomes in HFpEF beyond clinical and conventional echocardiographic measures.
Methods and Results—LS was assessed by 2D speckle-tracking echocardiography at baseline in 447 HFpEF patients enrolled in the Treatment Of Preserved Cardiac Function Heart Failure with an Aldosterone Antagonist (TOPCAT) trial. At a median follow-up of 2.6 (IQR 1.5-3.9) years, 115 patients experienced the primary composite outcome of CV death, HF hospitalization, or aborted cardiac arrest. Impaired LS, defined as an absolute LS<15.8%, was present in 52% of patients and was predictive of the composite outcome (adjusted HR 2.14, 95% CI 1.26-3.66; p=0.005), CV death alone (adjusted HR 3.20, 95% CI 1.44-7.12; p=0.004), and HF hospitalization alone (adjusted HR 2.23, 95% CI 1.16-4.28; p=0.016) after adjusting for clinical and conventional echocardiographic variables. LS was the strongest echocardiographic predictor of the composite outcome. Exploratory analysis in a subset of 131 patients with follow-up LS assessed after 12-18 months demonstrated a trend towards improvement in LS associated with spironolactone in patients enrolled in the Americas but not in Russia or Georgia.
Conclusions—Impaired LV systolic function is a powerful predictor of HF hospitalization, CV death, or aborted cardiac arrest in HFpEF, independent of clinical predictors. Impaired LS represents a novel imaging biomarker to identify HFpEF patients at particularly high risk for CV morbidity and mortality.
Clinical Trial Registration Information—Clinicaltrials.gov. Identifier NCT00094302.
- Received February 5, 2015.
- Revision received May 15, 2015.
- Accepted May 22, 2015.