Heart Failure Reviews

, 15:23 | Cite as

Echocardiography in the assessment of left ventricular longitudinal systolic function: current methodology and clinical applications

  • Valerio Zacà
  • Piercarlo Ballo
  • Maurizio Galderisi
  • Sergio Mondillo


Quantification of left ventricular (LV) systolic function represents a major aspect of echocardiographic assessment in the spectrum of cardiac diseases. However, because of the high complexity of LV contraction mechanics, the classical approach with assessment of a single measure of systolic function, such as ejection fraction or fractional shortening, has been largely superseded. During the last years, through the considerable technical advances in the field of ultrasonography, a number of different echocardiographic methodologies have become available to perform a detailed assessment of different aspects of LV contraction. In particular, evaluation of LV longitudinal systolic dynamics has progressively gained importance as a key aspect in the assessment of LV systolic function. For most of the techniques currently used to explore LV longitudinal function, the clinical usefulness in both research and daily practice has been validated by consistent evidence and their use is rapidly increasing. Technical considerations and potential clinical applications of the assessment of LV longitudinal systolic function are reviewed.


Left ventricle Systolic function Echocardiography Tissue Doppler Strain Strain rate 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Valerio Zacà
    • 1
  • Piercarlo Ballo
    • 2
  • Maurizio Galderisi
    • 3
  • Sergio Mondillo
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Cardiovascular DiseasesUniversity of SienaSienaItaly
  2. 2.Cardiology Operative UnitS. Andrea HospitalLa SpeziaItaly
  3. 3.Cardioangiology Unit with CCU, Department of Clinical and Experimental MedicineFederico II University HospitalNaplesItaly

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