Assessment of Interventricular Dyssynchrony by Real Time Three-Dimensional Echocardiography: An In Vitro Study in a Porcine Model


Address for correspondence and reprint requests: David J. Sahn, M.D., L608, Pediatric Cardiology, Oregon Health & Science University, 3181 SW Sam Jackson Park Road, Portland, OR 97239-3098. Fax: 503-494-2190; E-mail:


Background: Loss of synchronous contraction between or within the right and left ventricle (RV, LV) leads to adverse ventricular function. We used real time three-dimensional echocardiography (RT3DE) for evaluation of severity of interventricular dyssynchrony and function in a porcine heart model. Methods: Six fresh in vitro porcine hearts were used to create a controlled model of LV and RV dyssynchrony using two sets of pulsatile pumps. Synchronized and dyssynchronized pump settings were used with two different dyssynchronized settings: LV filled first and RV filled first. Results: There was good correlation between actual measurement and RT3DE for interventricular time difference (r = 0.95, P < 0.0001) and stroke volume (SV) for LV and RV (0.89, 0.85; P < 0.0001, respectively). RT3DE data showed a small but significant underestimation for actual volume (P < 0.05). The intra- and interobserver variabilities are 2.9 ± 1.5% and 3.1 ± 5.4% for LV and RV SVs, and 1.7 ± 2.4% and 2.2 ± 3.2% for time differences by RT3DE. There was significant difference in RV SV between synchrony and dyssynchrony when the RV filled first (P < 0.05), but not in other groups. The same pattern was found in RT3DE derived SVs (synchrony versus dyssynchrony with RV filled first, P < 0.05). Conclusions: There is no compromise in LV SV during interventricular dyssynchrony; but RV SV was significantly diminished when the RV filled first. RT3DE is a feasible, robust and reproducible method to identify interventricular dyssynchrony and to evaluate ventricular SVs. (Echocardiography 2010;27:709-715)