Diastolic dysfunction represents a combination of impaired left ventricular (LV) relaxation, restoration forces, myocyte lengthening load, and atrial function, culminating in increased LV filling pressures. Current Doppler echocardiography guidelines recommend using early to late diastolic transmitral flow velocity (E/A) to assess diastolic function, and E to early diastolic mitral annular tissue velocity (E/e') to estimate LV filling pressures. Although both parameters have important diagnostic and prognostic implications, they should be interpreted in the context of a patient's age and the rest of the echocardiogram to describe diastolic function and guide patient management. This review discusses: 1) the physiological basis for the E/A and E/e′ ratios; 2) their roles in diagnosing diastolic dysfunction; 3) prognostic implications of abnormalities in E/A and E/e′; 4) special scenarios of the E/A and E/e′ ratios that are either useful or challenging when evaluating diastolic function clinically; and 5) their usefulness in guiding therapeutic decision making.
- LV relaxation
- heart failure with preserved ejection fraction
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine