Diastolic Dysfunction in Women With Signs and Symptoms of Ischemia in the Absence of Obstructive Coronary Artery DiseaseCLINICAL PERSPECTIVE
A Hypothesis-Generating Study
Background—Angina, in the absence of obstructive coronary artery disease, is more common in women, is associated with adverse cardiovascular morbidity and mortality, and is a major burden to the healthcare system. Although advancements have been made to understand the mechanistic underpinning of this disease, the functional consequence remains unclear.
Methods and Results—Cardiac magnetic resonance imaging was performed to assess left ventricular function in 20 women with signs and symptoms of ischemia, but no obstructive coronary artery disease (cases), and 15 age- and body mass index–matched reference controls. Functional imaging included standard cinematic imaging to assess left ventricular morphology and global function, along with tissue tagging to assess left ventricular tissue deformation. Systolic function was preserved in both cases and controls, with no differences in ejection fraction (mean±SE: 63.1±8% versus 65±2%), circumferential strain (−20.7±0.6% versus −21.9±0.5%), or systolic circumferential strain rate (−105.9±6.1% versus −109.0±3.8% per second). In contrast, we observed significant differences between cases and controls in diastolic function, as demonstrated by reductions in both diastolic circumferential strain rate (153.8±8.9% versus 191.4±8.9% per second; P<0.05) and peak rate of left ventricular untwisting (−99.4±8.0° versus −129.4±12.8° per second; P<0.05).
Conclusions—Diastolic function is impaired in women with signs and symptoms of ischemia in the absence of coronary artery disease, as assessed by cardiac magnetic resonance tissue tagging. These results are hypothesis-generating. Larger studies are needed to define the exact mechanism(s) responsible and to establish viable treatment strategies.
- Received November 27, 2013.
- Accepted March 10, 2014.
- © 2014 American Heart Association, Inc.