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J Vet Sci 2018; 19(5): 676-682  https://doi.org/10.4142/jvs.2018.19.5.676
Speckle-tracking analysis of myocardial deformation in correlation to age in healthy horses
Heidrun Gehlen*, Lisa-Marie Bildheim
Equine Clinic, Freie Universitaet Berlin, 14195 Berlin, Germany
Correspondence to: Tel: +49-30-83862299; Fax: +49-30-838462529; E-mail: Heidrun.Gehlen@fu-berlin.de
Received: January 22, 2018; Revised: March 13, 2018; Accepted: April 23, 2018; Published online: September 30, 2018.
An effect of aging on cardiac morphology and function has been shown in humans. In horses, cardiac wall motion analysis using two-dimensional speckle tracking (2D-ST) has not yet been reported. Our study included 57 horses of different warmblood breeds between 3 and 30 years old. Age had a significant influence on left ventricular free wall (LVFW) systolic strain rate (p ≤ 0.05) and early diastolic relaxation (p ≤ 0.01). In the interventricular septum (IVS), systolic (p ≤ 0.01) and late diastolic (p ≤ 0.05) contraction velocities also increased with age. In our study, 2D-ST revealed important information on myocardial function, which was most evident in the LVFW, where measurements were highly reproducible. Aging seems to be associated with structural changes within the myocardium and with decreasing contraction capacity in old animals. These physiological, age-related processes should be considered when performing cardiac wall motion analysis of the 2D-ST results for the LVFW and IVS in horses.
Keywords: aging, echocardiography, horses, myocardium, speckle tracking

© 2018 The Korean Society of Veterinary Science.

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0) which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.