Myocardial contractility of the left ventricle (LV) is related to arterial distensibility. Sport activity is frequently associated with changes in both LV and arterial functions. This study aimed to find correlations between three-dimensional speckle-tracking echocardiography-derived segmental LV deformation parameters and echocardiographically assessed aortic stiffness index (ASI) in athletes. This study comprised 26 young elite athletes (mean age: 26.7 ± 8.4 years, nine men).
Among segmental circumferential strains (CSs), only that of apical anterior (r = 0.40, p = 0.05), septal (r = 0.47, p = 0.01), inferior (r = 0.59, p = 0.001), lateral (r = 0.44, p < 0.05), and midventricular anteroseptal (r = 0.44, p < 0.05) segments correlated with ASI, whereas LV-CS of the midventricular anterior segment showed a correlation tendency. Only longitudinal strain of basal anteroseptal (r = −0.46, p < 0.05) and inferoseptal (r = −0.57, p < 0.01) segments showed correlations with ASI, whereas that of the basal anterior segment had only a tendency to correlate. Some segmental multidirectional strains also correlated with ASI.
Correlations could be demonstrated between increased aortic stiffness and circular function of the apical and midventricular LV fibers and longitudinal motion of the basal septum and LV anterior wall (part of LV outflow tract) in maintaining circulation in the elite athletes.
Left ventricular (LV) twist is considered an essential part of LV function due to oppositely directed LV basal and apical rotations. Several factors could play a role in determining LV rotational mechanics in normal circumstances. This study aimed to investigate the relationship between LV rotational mechanics and mitral annular (MA) size and function in healthy subjects.
The study comprised 118 healthy adult volunteers (mean age: 31.5 ± 11.8 years, 50 males). All subjects had undergone complete two-dimensional (2D) Doppler echocardiography and three-dimensional speckle-tracking echocardiography (3DSTE) at the same time by the same echocardiography equipment.
The normal mean LV apical and basal rotations proved to be 9.57 ± 3.33 and −3.75 ± 1.98°, respectively. LV apical rotation correlated with end-systolic MA diameter, area, perimeter, fractional area change, and fractional shortening, but did not correlate with any end-diastolic mitral annular morphologic parameters. The logistic regression model identified MA fractional area change as an independent predictor of ≤6° left ventricular apical rotation (P < 0.003).
Correlations could be detected between apical LV rotation and end-systolic MA size and function, suggesting relationships between MA dimensions and function and LV rotational mechanics.