Key words: Heart – Magnetic resonance imaging – Heart function tests – Cardiac volume
Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Abstract. We examined possible age- and gender-specific differences in the function and mass of left (LV) and right (RV) ventricles in 36 healthy volunteers using cine gradient-recalled echo magnetic resonance imaging. Subjects were divided into four groups (nine men and nine women in each): men aged under 45 years (32 ± 7), women aged under 45 (27 ± 6), men aged over 45 (59 ± 8), and women aged over 45 (57 ± 9). Functional analysis of cardiac volume and mass and of LV wall motion was performed by manual segmentation of the endocardial and epicardial borders of the end-diastolic and end-systolic frame; both absolute and normalized (per square meter body surface area) values were evaluated. With age there was a significant decrease in both absolute and normalized LV and RV chamber volumes (EDV, ESV), while LV and RV masses remained unchanged. Gender-specific differences were found in cardiac mass and volume (for men and women, respectively: LV mass, 155 ± 18 and 110 ± 16 g; LV EDV, 118 ± 27 and 96 ± 21 ml; LV ESV, 40 ± 13 and 29 ± 9 ml; RV mass, 52 ± 10 and 39 ± 5 g; RV EDV, 131 ± 28 and 100 ± 23 ml; RV ESV, 53 ± 17 and 33 ± 15 ml). Normalization to body surface area eliminated differences in LV volumes but not those in LV mass, RV mass, or RV function. Functional parameters such as cardiac output and LV ejection fraction showed nonsignificant or only slight differences and were thus largely independent of age and gender. Intra- and interobserver variability ranged between 1.4 % and 5.9 % for all parameters. Cine magnetic resonance imaging thus shows age- and gender-specific differences in cardiac function, and therefore the evaluation of cardiac function in patients should consider age- and gender-matched normative values.
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