Importance: Before the introduction of 3-dimensional echocardiography, estimations of right ventricular (RV) size and function by echocardiography were limited to regional approximations of global function. This review describes the novel application of 3-dimensional echocardiography in the assessment of RV size and function, in juxtaposition with what is currently available using 2-dimensional echocardiography. Observations: Two-dimensional echocardiographic evaluation of RV size and function includes measures of systolic basal longitudinal excursion (tricuspid annular plane systolic excursion and peak systolic velocity), fractional area change, and free-wall strain, all of which are measured from a single tomographic imaging plane: The RV-focused view. Given this limitation, clinical situations in which more accurate assessment of the RV or close patient follow-up were required were resolved with the use of cardiovascular magnetic resonance, computed tomography, and other modalities to obtain global measures of size and function (ie, volume and ejection fraction). With 3-dimensional echocardiography, both volume and ejection fraction assessments of the RV are possible with an accuracy and reproducibility close to that of cardiovascular magnetic resonance imaging. Further, 3-dimensional RV data sets can be cropped, sliced, and rotated to assess device leads, tricuspid valve leaflets, and RV wall-motion abnormalities. The 3-dimensional RV data set opens the horizon to endless possibilities for further exploration of novel parameters, including 3-dimensional RV shape and 3-dimensional RV deformation analysis. Conclusions and Relevance: The use of 3-dimensional echocardiography overcomes many of the limitations associated with conventional 2-dimensional echocardiography and has the potential to provide the detailed information required for the complex clinical decision-making that requires accurate, quantitative information about the RV.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine