Background: Ventricular dilation, indexed by marked shifts toward larger volumes of the end-diastolic pressure-volume relation (EDPVR), has been considered to represent an irreversible aspect of ventricular remodeling in end-stage heart failure. However, we hypothesized that such dilation could be reversed with sufficient hemodynamic unloading, such as can be provided by a left ventricular assist device (LVAD). Methods and Results: The EDPVRs of hearts from seven patients with end-stage idiopathic cardiomyopathy and comparable baseline hemodynamics were measured ex vivo at the time of cardiac transplantation; these were compared with EDPVRs from three normal human hearts that were technically unsuitable for transplantation. Four of the patients received optimal medical therapy; three of the patients, who deteriorated on optimal therapy, underwent LVAD support for ≃4 months. Compared with the normal hearts, EDPVRs of hearts from medically treated patients were shifted toward markedly larger volumes. In contrast, EDPVRs of hearts from LVAD patients were similar to those of normal hearts. Conclusions: Chronic hemodynamic unloading of sufficient magnitude and duration can result in reversal of chamber enlargement and normalization of cardiac structure as indexed by the EDPVR, both important aspects of remodeling even in the most advanced stages of heart failure.
- cardiac volume
- heart failure
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
- Physiology (medical)