Background. Cardiovascular complications contribute to the high morbidity and mortality rate among children with anorexia nervosa (AN). Advances in cardiac imaging permit a more comprehensive assessment of myocardial performance in children that could not be previously obtained with conventional imaging. Myocardial strain analysis is an emerging quantitative echocardiographic technique to characterize global and regional ventricular function in children. Objective. To assess global and regional left ventricular (LV0 function in children newly diagnosed with AN with conventional and quantitative 2-dimensional speckle tracking echocardiographic (2DSTE)-derived strain imaging. Materials. In a cross-sectional study of 30 patients with AN (DSM-5) and 14 age-, sex-, and race-matched healthy children, markers of cardiovascular risk, conventional and 2DSTE measures of LV function, and structure were evaluated and compared. The AN cohort was further stratified by behavioral patterns (restrict, exercise, or purge). Results. Conventional measures and LV global strain were similar between controls and children with AN. A subgroup of AN children with purging behavior had LV remodeling characterized by significantly decreased LV mass index. Regional ventricular function at the apex, as measured by strain, was also decreased in all AN patients. Percent change from ideal body weight, body mass index Z-score, electrolyte profiles, heart rate, and blood pressure were similar. Conclusions. Subclinical regional ventricular dysfunction is present in children with AN. Ventricular remodeling exists in a subgroup of children with AN in association with purging behavior. Future studies may utilize strain imaging to identify those AN patients who are at an increased risk for developing significant cardiac dysfunction.
- Journal Article