Evaluation of Left Ventricular Structure and Function using 3D Echocardiography

Adrienn Ujvári1, Bálint Károly Lakatos1, Márton Tokodi1, Alexandra Fábián1, Béla Merkely1, Attila Kovács1
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Three-dimensional (3D) quantification of the left ventricle (LV) provides significant added value in terms of diagnostic accuracy and precise risk stratification in various cardiac disorders. Recently, 3D echocardiography became available in routine cardiology practice; however, high-quality image acquisition and subsequent analysis have a steep learning curve. The present article aims to guide the reader through a detailed 3D protocol by presenting tips and tricks and also by highlighting the potential pitfalls to facilitate the widespread but technically sound use of this important technique concerning the LV. First and foremost, we show the acquisition of a high-quality 3D dataset with optimal spatial and temporal resolution. Then, we present the analytical steps toward a detailed quantification of the LV by using one of the most widely applied built-in software. We will quantify LV volumes, sphericity, mass and also systolic function by measuring ejection fraction and myocardial deformation (longitudinal and circumferential strain). We will discuss and provide clinical examples about the essential scenarios where the transition from a conventional echocardiographic approach to a 3D-based quantification is highly recommended.