Right Ventricular Remodeling Assessed by MRI in Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

Nicholas K. Brown*, Haben Berhane, Katheryn Gambetta, Michael Markl, Cynthia K. Rigsby, Joshua D Robinson, Nazia Husain

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: In Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), the right ventricle (RV) tends to be relatively well preserved, but characterization remains difficult due to its complex architecture. Tissue phase mapping (TPM) is a phase contrast cine MRI technique that allows for multidirectional assessment of myocardial velocities. Purpose: To use TPM to elucidate relationships between myocardial structure, function, and clinical variables in DMD. Study Type: Retrospective. Subjects: A total of 20 patients with muscular dystrophy (median age: 16 years); 18 age-matched normal controls (median age: 15 years). Field Strength/Sequence: Three-directional velocity encoded cine gradient echo sequence (TPM) at 1.5 T, balanced steady-state free procession (bSSFP), T1 mapping with extracellular volume (ECV), and late gadolinium enhancement (LGE). Assessment: TPM in basal, mid, and apical short-axis planes was performed as part of a standard MRI study with collection of clinical data. Radial, circumferential, and longitudinal velocities (Vr, Vφ, and Vz, respectively) and corresponding time to peak (TTP) velocities were quantified from TPM and used to calculate RV twist as well as intraventricular and interventricular dyssynchrony. The correlations between TPM velocities, myocardial structure/function, and clinical variables were assessed. Statistical Test: Unpaired t-test, Wilcoxon rank-sum test, Bland–Altman analyses were used for comparisons between DMD patients and controls and between DMD subgroups. Pearson's test was used for correlations (r). Significance level: P < 0.05. Results: Compared to controls, DMD patients had preserved RV ejection fraction (RVEF 53% ± 8%) but significantly increased interventricular dyssynchrony (Vφ: 0.49 ± 0.21 vs. 0.72 ± 0.17). Within the DMD cohort, RV dyssynchrony significantly increased with lower LV ejection fraction (intraventricular Vr and Vz: r = −0.49; interventricular Vz: r = 0.48). In addition, RV intraventricular dyssynchrony significantly increased with older age (Vz: r = 0.67). Data Conclusion: RV remodeling in DMD occurs in the context of preserved RVEF. Within DMD, this abnormal RV deformation is associated with older age and decreased LVEF. Evidence Level: 4. Technical Efficacy: Stage 2.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Magnetic Resonance Imaging
StateAccepted/In press - 2022


  • Duchenne muscular dystrophy
  • late gadolinium enhancement
  • parametric mapping
  • tissue phase mapping

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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