The temporal relationship between cirrhotic cardiomyopathy, progression of liver disease, and survival remains unknown. Our aim was to investigate the development of structural and functional cardiac changes over time with the progression of cirrhosis and outcome. Sixty-three cirrhotic outpatients (Child class: A = 9, B = 46, C = 8) and 14 healthy controls were included in this 2-yr longitudinal study. Advanced cardiac characteristics such as cardiac MRI with extracellular volume (ECV) quantification, speckle tracking echocardiography, and biomarkers were assessed at 0/6/12/18/24 mo. Patients were followed-up for a median of 30 mo with registration of acute decompensations (ADs), liver transplantations (LTs), and deaths. Patients who progressed, underwent LT or died had more pronounced cardiac dysfunction, structural myocardial changes, and left atrial enlargement. Conversely, limited cardiac deterioration was seen in patients who remained stable or improved in cirrhosis. During follow-up 25 patients developed AD, 4 underwent LT, and 20 died. Mean arterial pressure was the only cardiovascular parameter associated with death in a univariate analysis (P = 0.037), and the main predictors were model for end-stage liver disease and age. However, last-visit myocardial ECV was independently associated with the combined end point of LT/death (P = 0.001), and in patients with AD a low cardiac index was independently associated with death (P = 0.01). Cardiac function seems to deteriorate with the progression of cirrhosis and affects prognosis, especially in patients with AD. Conversely, patients with stable cirrhosis have limited progression in cardiac dysfunction over a 2-yr period with modest impact on survival. The results encourage careful cardiac monitoring in advanced cirrhosis.NEW & NOTEWORTHY For the first time, we have performed advanced cardiac imaging to investigate the development of cirrhotic cardiomyopathy over 2 years. We show that cardiac dysfunction deteriorates with progression of cirrhosis and may affect the prognosis in patients developing acute decompensation. Especially, structural myocardial abnormalities, left atrial enlargement, and a hypodynamic cardiac state seem of importance. Conversely, limited cardiac progression is seen in stable cirrhosis. These findings provide new insight into our understanding of cirrhotic cardiomyopathy.

TidsskriftAmerican Journal of Physiology: Gastrointestinal and Liver Physiology
Udgave nummer3
Sider (fra-til)G253-G263
StatusUdgivet - 1 sep. 2019


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