Evaluation of color kinesis, a new echocardiographic method for analyzing regional wall motion in patients with dilated left ventricles

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      The recently developed echocardiographic technology of color kinesis (CK) displays endocardial motion in color layers on a single end-systolic 2-dimensional echocardiographic frame. Previous work using this method is promising for quantitation of regional function, but there is limited experience in patients with severely reduced left ventricular function. Twenty patients (age 59 ± 10 years) with dilated cardiomyopathy (left ventricular ejection fraction 22 ± 8%) underwent CK imaging. Endocardial motion was quantitated by measuring the distance of endocardial motion during the systolic interval and also by calculating the endocardial velocity. CK measurements were compared among 4 wall motion grades (i.e., normal, hypokinetic, akinetic, and dyskinetic) assessed by qualitative wall motion scoring. There was a significant overall difference (p < 0.0001) in the mean systolic endocardial inward motion (i.e., contraction) and outward motion (i.e., expansion) among wall motion grades. The mean endocardial outward distance was significantly greater for the dyskinetic segments than for the other grades (p < 0.001). There were also differences in the mean velocity of endocardial motion among the wall motion grades. In the presence of left bundle branch block, there was no difference in the mean endocardial inward distance of the hypokinetic, akinetic, and dyskinetic septal segments. We conclude that in the absence of left bundle branch block, normal, hypokinetic, akinetic, and dyskinetic ventricular wall segments may be distinguished in patients with dilated cardiomyopathy on the basis of endocardial motion measured with CK.
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