Left ventricular (LV) hypertrophy consists in an increased LV wall thickness. LV hypertrophy can be either secondary, in response to pressure or volume overload, or primary, i.e. not explained solely by abnormal loading conditions. Primary LV hypertrophy may be due to gene mutations or to the deposition or storage of abnormal substances in the extracellular spaces or within the cardiomyocytes (more appropriately defined as pseudohypertrophy). LV hypertrophy is often a precursor to subsequent development of heart failure. Cardiovascular imaging plays a key role in the assessment of LV hypertrophy. Echocardiography, the first-line imaging technique, allows a comprehensive assessment of LV systolic and diastolic function. Cardiovascular magnetic resonance provides added value as it measures accurately LV and right ventricular volumes and mass and characterizes myocardial tissue properties, which may provide important clues to the final diagnosis. Additionally, scintigraphy with bone tracers is included in the diagnostic algorithm of cardiac amyloidosis. Once the diagnosis is established, imaging findings may help predict future disease evolution and inform therapy and follow-up. This consensus document by the Heart Failure Association of the European Society of Cardiology provides an overview of the role of different cardiac imaging techniques for the differential diagnosis and management of patients with LV hypertrophy.
- Consensus document