Published: 2017-03-23

Echocardiographic findings in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and correlation of right ventricular dysfunction with disease severity

Vinod Singh Jatav, S. R. Meena, Shivcharan Jelia, Pankaj Jain, Devendra Ajmera, Vinit Agarwal, Chirangee L. Dayma, Mohd. Arif


Background: COPD is a powerful and independent risk factor for cardiovascular morbidity and mortality which includes right ventricular (RV) dysfunction and cor pulmonale secondary to pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH), left ventricular dysfunction. Echocardiography provides a rapid, noninvasive, portable, and accurate method to evaluate cardiac functions. Early diagnoses and intervention for cardiac comorbidities would reduce mortalities in COPD patients. The aim of this study is to find echocardiographic changes in COPD patients and to assess RV dysfunction by echocardiography and correlate with the disease severity.

Methods: 100 patients of COPD fulfilling the inclusion criteria coming to OPD/wards of NMCH, Kota were recruited. They were staged by pulmonary function test (PFT) and evaluated by echocardiography. Statistical analysis of correlation was done with chi square test and statistical significance was taken p<0.05.

Results: Most common echocardiographic finding was cor pulmonale, which was present in 62% of cases, other echocardiographic findings were PAH in 44% cases, RA/RV dilatation (43%), RVH (42%), LVDD (46%), RVSD (14%) and LVH in 11% of cases. Echocardiographic signs of RV dysfunction observed are PAH, cor pulmonale and RVSD which are correlated with the severity of the disease (p<0.05).

Conclusions: Echocardiographic examination is reliable in following COPD patients with PAH instead of repeated cardiac catheterization. The incidence of RV dysfunction is more common as the severity of COPD increases and there is a significant correlation between the degree of air flow limitation (FEV1) and RV dysfunction.


Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, Cor pulmonale, Echocardiography, RV dysfunction

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