Importance of the echocardiographic evaluation of right ventricular function in patients with AL amyloidosis

Stefano Ghio, Stefano Perlini, Giovanni Palladini, Nina Ajmone Marsan, Giovanna Faggiano, Monia Vezzoli, Catherine Klersy, Carlo Campana, Giampaolo Merlini, Luigi Tavazzi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Patients with AL amyloidosis often present with signs of congestive heart failure. Aim: This study was prospectively designed to assess the significance of RV dysfunction in AL amyloidosis. Methods and results: Seventy-four patients with biopsy proven AL amyloidosis underwent a thorough echocardiographic evaluation. A tricuspid annular plane systolic excursion (TAPSE) <17 mm was taken as marker of RV dysfunction. Plasma NT-proBNP determinations were performed in all cases. RV function was normal in 60 patients and reduced in 14 patients. Patients with RV dysfunction had thicker left ventricular (LV) walls (p <0.01), lower LV end-diastolic volumes (p <0.01), lower LV ejection fraction (p <0.01) and more frequently a restrictive LV filling pattern (p <0.01). RV dimensions and RV free wall thickness were not significantly different in the two groups. A thick interventricular septum and a reduced TAPSE were associated with high NT-proBNP levels (both p <0.01). Seven patients died during a median follow-up period of 19 months; TAPSE <17 mm was the only echocardiographic parameter associated with poor survival. Conclusion: In patients with AL amyloidosis, RV dysfunction is associated with more severe involvement of the left ventricle, higher plasma levels of NT-proBNP and with poor prognosis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)808-813
Number of pages6
JournalEuropean Journal of Heart Failure
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2007


  • Amyloid
  • Echocardiography
  • Prognosis
  • Right ventricle

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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