Non-invasive assessment of the right atrial size and function: methods and significance
Nógrádi Ágnes, Faludi Réka
Pécsi Tudományegyetem, Klinikai Központ, Szívgyógyászati Klinika, Pécs
The traditional target of the cardiovascular imaging was the left ventricle. In the last decades the left atrium and the right heart also gained importance. The development of new imaging modalities such as modern echocardiographic techniques, cardiac CT and MRI made it possible to acquire more exact and detailed knowledge of the right atrium, as the last cardiac chamber to be investigated. After the one- and two-dimensional evaluation of the right atrial size, three-dimensional volume evaluation has become also possible. Better temporal resolution enables the differentiated assessment of the phases of right atrial function, providing more information on early functional impairment and compensatory mechanisms. The detailed knowledge of right atrial morphology and function allows for more exact diagnosis, risk assessment and prognostic evaluation.