Pulmonary Hypertension Measurement

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Circulation. 1984 Oct;70(4):657-62.
Noninvasive estimation of right ventricular systolic pressure by Doppler ultrasound in patients with tricuspid regurgitation.
Yock PG, Popp RL.

We evaluated the accuracy of a noninvasive method for estimating right ventricular systolic pressures in patients with tricuspid regurgitation detected by Doppler ultrasound. Of 62 patients with clinical signs of elevated right-sided pressures, 54 (87%) had jets of tricuspid regurgitation clearly recorded by continuous-wave Doppler ultrasound. By use of the maximum velocity (V) of the regurgitant jet, the systolic pressure gradient (delta P) between right ventricle and right atrium was calculated by the modified Bernoulli equation (delta P = 4V2). Adding the transtricuspid gradient to the mean right atrial pressure (estimated clinically from the jugular veins) gave predictions of right ventricular systolic pressure that correlated well with catheterization values (r = .93, SEE = 8 mm Hg). The tricuspid gradient method provides an accurate and widely applicable method for noninvasive estimation of elevated right ventricular systolic pressures.

J Am Coll Cardiol. 1985 Oct;6(4):750-6.
Continuous wave Doppler determination of right ventricular pressure: a simultaneous Doppler-catheterization study in 127 patients.
Currie PJ, Seward JB, Chan KL, Fyfe DA, Hagler DJ, Mair DD, Reeder GS, Nishimura RA, Tajik AJ.

Simultaneous continuous wave Doppler echocardiography and right-sided cardiac pressure measurements were performed during cardiac catheterization in 127 patients. Tricuspid regurgitation was detected by the Doppler method in 117 patients and was of adequate quality to analyze in 111 patients. Maximal systolic pressure gradient between the right ventricle and right atrium was 11 to 136 mm Hg (mean 53 +/- 29) and simultaneously measured Doppler gradient was 9 to 127 mm Hg (mean 49 +/- 26); for these two measurements, r = 0.96 and SEE = 7 mm Hg. Right ventricular systolic pressure was estimated by three methods from the Doppler gradient. These were 1) Doppler gradient + mean jugular venous pressure; 2) using a regression equation derived from the first 63 patients (Group 1); and 3) Doppler gradient + 10. These methods were tested on the remaining 48 patients with Doppler-analyzable tricuspid regurgitation (Group 2). The correlation between Doppler-estimated and catheter-measured right ventricular systolic pressure was similar using all three methods; however, the regression equation produced a significantly better estimate (p less than 0.05). Use of continuous wave Doppler blood flow velocity of tricuspid regurgitation permitted determination of the systolic pressure gradient across the tricuspid valve and the right ventricular systolic pressure. This noninvasive technique yielded information comparable with that obtained at catheterization. Approximately 80% of patients with increased and 57% with normal right ventricular pressure had analyzable Doppler tricuspid regurgitant velocities that could be used to accurately predict right ventricular systolic pressure.

Circulation. 1983 Aug;68(2):302-9.
Noninvasive evaluation of pulmonary hypertension by a pulsed Doppler technique.
Kitabatake A, Inoue M, Asao M, Masuyama T, Tanouchi J, Morita T, Mishima M, Uematsu M, Shimazu T, Hori M, Abe H.

We used a pulsed Doppler technique to examine the flow velocity pattern in the right ventricular outflow tract in 33 adults. In the patients with normal pulmonary artery pressure (mean pressure less than 20 mm Hg, 16 patients), ejection flow reached a peak level at midsystole (137 +/- 24 msec, mean +/- SD), producing a domelike contour of the flow velocity pattern during systole. In contrast, the flow velocity pattern in patients with pulmonary hypertension (mean pressure greater than or equal to 20 mm Hg, 17 patients) was demonstrated to accelerate rapidly and to reach a peak level sooner (97 +/- 20 msec, p less than .01); in 10 of the pulmonary hypertensive patients a secondary slower rise in flow velocity was observed during a deceleration, resulting in the midsystolic notching. The time to peak flow (acceleration time, AcT) and right ventricular ejection time (RVET) were measured from the flow velocity pattern. Either AcT or AcT/RVET decreased with increase in mean pulmonary artery pressure, and a very high correlation (r = -.90) was found between AcT/RVET and log10 (mean pulmonary artery pressure). The use of this technique permitted the noninvasive estimation of the pulmonary artery pressure.

J Am Coll Cardiol. 1987 Mar;9(3):549-54.
Comparison of three Doppler ultrasound methods in the prediction of pulmonary artery pressure.
Chan KL, Currie PJ, Seward JB, Hagler DJ, Mair DD, Tajik AJ.

Pulmonary artery pressure was noninvasively estimated by three Doppler echocardiographic methods in 50 consecutive patients undergoing cardiac catheterization. First, a systolic transtricuspid gradient was calculated from Doppler-detected tricuspid regurgitation; clinical jugular venous pressure or a fixed value of 14 mm Hg was added to yield systolic pulmonary artery pressure. Second, acceleration time from pulmonary flow analysis was used in a regression equation to derive mean pulmonary artery pressure. Third, right ventricular isovolumic relaxation time was calculated from Doppler-determined pulmonary valve closure and tricuspid valve opening; systolic pulmonary artery pressure was then derived from a nomogram. In 48 patients (96%) at least one of the methods could be employed. A tricuspid pressure gradient, obtained in 36 patients (72%), provided reliable prediction of systolic pulmonary artery pressure. The prediction was superior when 14 mm Hg rather than estimated jugular venous pressure was used to account for right atrial pressure. In 44 patients (88%), pulmonary flow was analyzed. Prediction of mean pulmonary artery pressure was unsatisfactory (r = 0.65) but improved (r = 0.85) when only patients with a heart rate between 60 and 100 beats/min were considered. The effect of correcting pulmonary flow indexes for heart rate was examined by correlating different flow indexes before and after correction for heart rate. There was a good correlation between corrected acceleration time and either systolic (r = -0.85) or mean (r = -0.83) pulmonary artery pressure. Because of a high incidence of arrhythmia, right ventricular relaxation time could be determined in only 11 patients (22%). Noninvasive prediction of pulmonary artery pressure is feasible in most patients.

Am J Cardiol. 1986 Aug 1;58(3):352-6.
Factors affecting use of the Doppler-determined time from flow onset to maximal pulmonary artery velocity for measurement of pulmonary artery pressure in children.
Serwer GA, Cougle AG, Eckerd JM, Armstrong BE.

Measurement of the time from onset to maximal or peak velocity (TPV) of pulmonary artery (PA) flow has been proposed as a noninvasive means of determining PA pressure. The effects of age, heart rate, increased PA pressure and flow, pulmonary valve obstruction and altered PA vascular resistance on this measurement were evaluated. In 84 children, aged 1 day to 18 years, TPV was measured using continuous-wave Doppler echocardiography. The children were separated into 3 groups. Group I (n = 33) consisted of children with no cardiovascular abnormalities. Group II (n = 33) consisted of children with a variety of cardiovascular diseases producing varying PA pressures and flows. Group III (n = 18) consisted of children who had valvular pulmonic stenosis with PA to right ventricular gradients greater than 40 mm Hg. Doppler studies of group II and III patients were performed in conjunction with measurement of PA pressures and flows at the time of cardiac catheterization. In group I TPV showed a significant negativelinear correlation with heart rate (r = -0.86, p less than 0.001). The ratio of observed TPV to predicted TPV (TPVN) determined using the regression equation for TPV vs heart rate or TPV/TPVN was heart rate- and age-independent (p greater than 0.1) and ranged from 0.81 to 1.31 (mean 1.005). In group II TPV/TPVN was inversely related to the natural log of the PA pressures (systolic, r = -0.91; mean, r = -0.87; diastolic, r = -0.82; all p less than 0.01), whether pressure elevation was due to increased flow, resistance or left atrial hypertension.

Circulation. 1986 Sep;74(3):484-92.
Continuous-wave Doppler echocardiographic detection of pulmonary regurgitation and its application to noninvasive estimation of pulmonary artery pressure.
Masuyama T, Kodama K, Kitabatake A, Sato H, Nanto S, Inoue M.

Continuous-wave Doppler echocardiography was used to estimate pulmonary artery pressures by measuring pulmonary regurgitant flow velocity in 21 patients with pulmonary hypertension (mean pulmonary artery pressure greater than or equal to 20 mm Hg) and 24 patients without pulmonary hypertension. The pulmonary regurgitant flow velocity patterns, characterized by a rapid rise in flow velocity immediately after closure of the pulmonary valve and a gradual deceleration until the next pulmonary valve opening, were successfully obtained in 18 of the 21 patients with pulmonary hypertension and in 13 of the 24 patients without pulmonary hypertension. As pulmonary artery pressure increased, pulmonary regurgitant flow velocity became higher; the pulmonary artery-to-right ventricular pressure gradient in diastole (PG) was estimated from the pulmonary regurgitant flow velocity (V) by means of the simplified Bernoulli equation (PG = 4V2). The Doppler-determined pressure gradient at end-diastole correlated well with thecatheter measurement of the pressure gradient at end-diastole (r = .94, SEE = 3 mm Hg) and with pulmonary artery end-diastolic pressure (r = .92, SEE = 4 mm Hg). The peak of Doppler-determined pressure gradient during diastole correlated well with mean pulmonary artery pressure (r = .92, SEE = 5 mm Hg). Thus continuous-wave Doppler echocardiography was useful for noninvasive estimation of pulmonary artery pressures.

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