Objective: Challenging differential diagnosis Background: Global longitudinal strain (GLS) detected by echocardiography has been shown to have a prognostic role in the evaluation of myocardial ischemia in several clinical settings. A case is presented where GLS was used to detect intraoperative myocardial ischemia in a high-risk patient undergoing open abdominal aortic aneurysm repair. Case Report: A 75-year-old Caucasian man with non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus and a 60 pack-year smoking history presented with a one-week history of exertional chest pain. Two-dimensional (2D) speckle-tracking echocardiography was used to calculate myocardial velocities and deformation parameters, including GLS. A reduced baseline GLS of –18.2% was found with dysfunction of the basal anterior, inferior, and mid anterolateral wall of the left ventricle. During aortic cross-clamping, his basal segments became mildly hypokinetic, although his ejection fraction (EF) remained unchanged at 50–55%. Despite normal left ventricular systolic function on visual assessment, his GLS decreased to –14.2% during aortic cross-clamping with similar segmental changes noted in the baseline GLS analysis. After the release of the aortic cross-clamp, his basal segments returned to normal and his left ventricular systolic function improved with an EF of 60–65% and the GLS recovered to-18.4% with improvement in the basal segmental function. Conclusions: This case report showed that detection of GLS by echocardiography was a sensitive indicator of myocardial dysfunction that was superior to regional ventricular wall assessment. Detection of early changes in myocardial function by evaluating GLS may assist in guiding anesthetic management in high-risk patients with ischemic heart disease.
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