Journal of Echocardiography

, Volume 15, Issue 4, pp 166–175 | Cite as

Right atrial myocardial deformation by two-dimensional speckle tracking echocardiography predicts recurrence in paroxysmal atrial fibrillation

  • Malini Govindan
  • Anatoli Kiotsekoglou
  • Samir K. Saha
  • A. John Camm
Original Investigation



Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a bi-atrial disease yet little attention has been given to right heart function in AF. We propose that the assessment of right atrial (RA) and right ventricular function (RV) using two-dimensional speckle tracking echocardiography (2D-STE) could be valuable in predicting AF recurrence in patients with paroxysmal AF (PAF).


Thirty patients with PAF were prospectively recruited from a dedicated AF clinic. Right atrial size, volume, and area and RV dimensions were analyzed along with RA and RV strain derived from 2D-STE at baseline and at 3 and 12 months.


Higher RA booster strain independently predicted sinus rhythm (SR) maintenance for up to 1 year (P = 0.001). RV strain was impaired in patients with recurrent AF compared to those in SR (P < 0.05) but did not predict AF recurrence. Two-dimensional STE for RA and RV function was simple to perform with excellent reproducibility (adjusted R 2 0.92–0.99).


Two-dimensional STE is useful and highly reproducible in assessing right heart function in AF patients. RA booster strain function was predictive of sinus rhythm maintenance for up to 1 year.


Atrial fibrillation Right atrial strain Right ventricular strain Two-dimensional speckle tracking echocardiography 



Funding was provided by British Heart Foundation (BHF) (Grant Number PG/08/038/24217).

Compliance with ethical standards

This study on patients with PAF was performed at St George’s University of London and St George’s Hospital, NHS Trust, London, UK

Conflict of interest

The British Heart Foundation (BHF) grant reference number was PG/08/038/24217. The title was “Utility of natriuretic peptides in patients with atrial fibrillation undergoing direct-current cardioversion or those requiring rate-control”. The Principal Investigator and grant holder was Professor A John Camm. The BHF grant only covered the peptides in atrial fibrillation. However, we have reported in our manuscript a correlation between peptides and echocardiographic parameters. Dr. Samir Kanti Saha performed the statistical analysis and created the first draft of the manuscript in conjunction with MG and AK. Professor A John Camm was a BHF Professor until June 2012. The grant started on the 01/07/2008. Dr. Malini Govindan was funded by this BHF grant as a Research Fellow in order to complete her PhD thesis. Malini Govindan, Anatoli Kiotsekoglou, Samir Kanti Saha, and John Camm declare that they have no conflicts of interest.

Informed consent

The study was approved by the Local Ethics Committee at St George’s University of London, London, UK and informed consent was obtained from eligible patients.

Human and animal rights statement

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.


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Copyright information

© Japanese Society of Echocardiography 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Cardiovascular SciencesSt George’s University of LondonLondonUK
  2. 2.Department of Clinical Physiology, University Hospital of ÖrebroÖrebroSweden
  3. 3.Research and DevelopmentSundsvall Hospital at the Karolinska InstituteSundsvallSweden

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