Although there have been isolated reports of congestive heart failure (CHF) with normal systolic function, the prevalence and characteristics of this condition have not previously been described. Accordingly, 188 patients with CHF undergoing radionuclide ventriculography were prospectively evaluated. Sixty-seven (36%) had a normal ejection fraction (EF) of 0.45 or greater, and 121, an abnormal EF of less than 0.45. Of these, 72 (55 with an abnormal EF [group I] and 17 with a normal EF [group II]) were also reviewed for clinical characteristics. There was no demographic difference between groups, except that systemic hypertension appeared to be a contributing factor in 65% of the patients in group II, compared with 23% of the patients in group I (p <0.002). Echocardiographic left atrial emptying index, reflecting left ventricular compliance, was determined in 72 patients and 14 normal subjects. Left atrial emptying index in normal control subjects was 0.93 ± 0.11 (± standard deviation), compared with 0.41 ± 0.18 in group I and 0.44 ± 0.19 in group II patients (p <0.001 vs control in both groups). Thus, normal systolic function is common among patients with CHF. Diastolic dysfunction, consistent with a noncompliant left ventricle, was found in both CHF groups.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine