Pediatr Cardiol. 2017 Aug 3. doi: 10.1007/s00246-017-1697-3. [Epub ahead of
Meierhofer C, Tavakkoli T, Kühn A, Ulm K, Hager A, Müller J,
Martinoff S, Ewert P, Stern H.
Good quality of life correlates with a good exercise capacity in daily life in
patients with tetralogy of Fallot (ToF). Patients after correction of ToF usually
develop residual defects such as pulmonary regurgitation or stenosis of variable
severity. However, the importance of different hemodynamic parameters and their
impact on exercise capacity is unclear. We investigated several hemodynamic
parameters measured by cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) and
echocardiography and evaluated which parameter has the most pronounced effect on
maximal exercise capacity determined by cardiopulmonary exercise testing (CPET).
132 patients with ToF-like hemodynamics were tested during routine follow-up with
CMR, echocardiography and CPET. Right and left ventricular volume data,
ventricular ejection fraction and pulmonary regurgitation were evaluated by CMR.
Echocardiographic pressure gradients in the right ventricular outflow tract and
through the tricuspid valve were measured. All data were classified and
correlated with the results of CPET evaluations of these patients. The analysis
was performed using the Random Forest model. In this way, we calculated the
importance of the different hemodynamic variables related to the maximal oxygen
uptake in CPET (VO2%predicted). Right ventricular pressure showed the most
important influence on maximal oxygen uptake, whereas pulmonary regurgitation and
right ventricular enddiastolic volume were not important hemodynamic variables to
predict maximal oxygen uptake in CPET. Maximal exercise capacity was only very
weakly influenced by right ventricular enddiastolic volume and not at all by
pulmonary regurgitation in patients with ToF. The variable with the most
pronounced influence was the right ventricular pressure.