The aim of this study was to evaluate atrial electromechanical delay measured by tissue Doppler imaging and left atrial mechanical function in patients with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).
Materials and methods
Fourty-seven moderate-to-severe OSA patients who were newly diagnosed by polysomnography (Apnea-hypopnea index ³ 15 events/h, 32 males, mean age 49.4 ± 11.5) and 30 patients who had no OSA in polysomnography (Apnea-hypopnea index < 5 events/h, 21 males, mean age 45.4 ± 9.1) were included in the study. Using tissue Doppler, diastolic functions, atrial electromechanical coupling were measured from the lateral mitral, septal, and tricuspid annulus. İnter, intra, and left atrial electromechanical delay were calculated (lateral-tricuspid, septum-tricuspid, lateral-septal). Left atrial volumes (maximal, minimal, and presystolic) were measured by the method of discs in the apical four-chamber view and were indexed to body surface area. Mechanical function parameters of the left atrium were also calculated.
Interatrial, intraatrial, and left atrial electromechanical delays were significantly higher in the OSA group compared to the control group. Passive emptying fraction was significantly decreased, volume at the beginning of atrial systole and active emptying volume were significantly increased in OSA patients compared to the controls. The apnea-hypopnea index was significantly associated with interatrial and intraatrial electromechanical delay, passive emptying fraction, and conduit volume.
Electromechanical delay was markedly prolonged and left atrial electromechanical function was impaired in untreated OSA patients. These impairments worsen with increasing severity of OSA.