The right ventricle in patients with chronic heart failure and atrial fibrillation

Ewa Majos, Rafał Dąbrowski, Hanna Szwed

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Abstract

Under normal conditions function of the right ventricle (RV) is determined by the heart rhythm, RV filling time, RV systolic synchrony and interdependence between both ventricles. Failure ofthe left ventricle (LV) can lead to RV failure. Impaired function of the RV significantly worsensthe prognosis in patients after myocardial infarction and with LV failure. Permanent atrialfibrillation (AF) is one of the most common arrhythmia in patients with depressed RV function. Frequent coexistence of chronic heart failure (CHF) and AF causes overlapping of the arrhythmiaand RV dysfunction in the setting of CHF. They may lead to hemodynamic compromiseand worsen prognosis in patients with chronic RV failure of various etiologies. RV structureand function can be assessed in 2D, 3D echocardiography, cardiac magnetic resonance imagingand computed tomography.

Keywords

right ventricle, chronic heart failure, atrial fibrillation, CRT, echocardiography

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