Ten years of 2D longitudinal strain for early myocardial dysfunction detection: a clinical overview


Aurora Cardiovascular Services, Aurora Sinai/Aurora St. Luke's Medical Centers


In recent years, the role of left ventricular ejection fraction (EF) as the gold standard parameter for the evaluation of systolic function has been questioned, and many efforts have been concentrated in the clinical validation of new noninvasive tools for the study of myocardial contractility. Improvement in the accuracy of speckle-tracking echocardiography has resulted in a large amount of research showing the ability of two-dimensional strain to overcome EF limitations in the majority of primary and secondary heart diseases. Currently, global longitudinal strain (GLS) is considered the most accurate and sensitive parameter for the assessment of early left ventricular dysfunction. This review summarizes the advantages that this measurement can provide in several clinical settings. Moreover, the important cautions that should be considered in making the choice to use GLS also are addressed. Finally, a special focus on bull's-eye polar maps for the assessment of regional changes of longitudinal function and the usefulness of these maps in the differential diagnosis of several diseases is provided.

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