Am J Cardiovasc Dis 2012;2(4):279-284

Review Article
Valvular heart disease and 3-dimensional echocardiography: ready for
prime-time?

Luis M Moura, Leopoldo Perez de Isla

Department of Medicine, Oporto School of Medicine, University of Oporto, Portugal; Pedro Hispano Hospital, Matosinhos,
Portugal, Alameda Prof. Hernani Monteiro, 4200-319, Porto, Portugal; Cardiovascular Institute,  San Carlos Hospital,
Madrid, Complutense University of Madrid, Spain, Cardiovascular Institute, University Clinic San Carlos, Plaza de Cristo
Rey, 28040 Madrid, Spain

Received June 18, 2012; accepted September 30, 2012; Epub October 25, 2012; Published November 15, 2012

Abstract: Significant advances in 3-dimensional echocardiography (3DE) technology have ushered its use into clinical
practice. The recent advent of real-time 3DE using matrix array transthoracic and transesophageal transducers has
resulted in improved image spatial resolution, and therefore, enhanced visualization of the patho-morphological features of
the cardiac valves. Three-dimensional echocardiography provides unique perspectives of valvular structures by presenting
"en face" views of valvular structures, allowing for a better understanding of the topographical aspects of pathology, and a
refined definition of the spatial relationships of intracardiac structures. Three-dimensional echocardiography makes
available indices not described by 2D echocardiography and has been demonstrated to be superior to 2D
echocardiography in a variety of valvular disease scenarios. In this review, we discuss the incremental role of 3DE in
evaluating valvular anatomic features, volumetric quantification, pre-surgical planning, intra-procedural guidance, and
post-procedural assessment of valvular heart disease. (AJCD1206003).

Keywords: Aortic valve, mitral valve, three-dimensional echocardiography, valvular heart disease


Address all correspondence to:
Dr. Luis M Moura
Department of Medicine, Oporto School of Medicine
University of Oporto, Portugal; Pedro Hispano Hospital
Matosinhos, Portugal;
Alameda Prof. Hernani Monteiro, 4200-319
Porto, Portugal.
Tel: +351910201002; Fax: +351226092318;
E-mail: luismoura@med.up.pt
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