Ultrasound in Medicine & Biology vol:35 issue:1 pages:30-35
In small animals studies, sick animals often have a significant reduction in heart rate while under anesthesia. The influence of heart rate reduction on Doppler myocardial imaging (DMI) parameters is not known. The aim of the present study was to assess the effect of heart rate reduction on DMI parameters in a small animal model. Twenty-four rats underwent transthoracic echocardiography at baseline and during the administration of ivabradine IV. In all rats, left ventricular (LV) systolic velocity, strain and strain rate were measured in the anteroseptal and inferolateral wall segments from short axis views. In 12 rats (group A), M-mode analysis was also performed for assessment of global LV function. In the other 12 rats (groups B), contractility was quantified invasively using the end-systolic pressure-volume relation (ESPVR) and the preload recruitable stroke work (PRSW). During ivabradine, administration heart rate decreased by 18% in group A (p < 0.001) and 36% in group B (p < 0.001). There was a slight increase in LVEDD and LVESD, with no change in cardiac output or LV ejection fraction. During ivabradine administration, DMI parameters did not change significantly in any group. No significant correlation between DMI parameters and heart rate (r(2) = 0.05) or ejection time (r(2) = 0.14) could be found. The absence of changes in contractility was confirmed by the absence of change in PRSW and end-systolic elastance (Ees). In conclusion, moderate heart rate reduction did not influence DMI measurements in this specific rat model. Therefore, in the interpretation of DMI data when performing small animal studies, moderate heart rate reduction does not need to be taken into account. (E-mail: email@example.com).