Prevalence and Clinical Correlates of Echo-Estimated Right and Left Heart Filling Pressures in Hospitalized Patients With Coronavirus Disease 2019

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Abstract

Objectives: The prevalence of elevated right and left heart filling pressures in coronavirus disease 2019 is not well characterized. We aimed to characterize the prevalence of pulmonary hypertension and concurrent elevated left heart filling pressure in hospitalized patients with coronavirus disease 2019. We hypothesized that a significant proportion of coronavirus disease 2019 patients has evidence of pulmonary hypertension associated with elevated left heart filling pressure on transthoracic echocardiography. Design: Retrospective cohort study. Setting: Academic tertiary-care center. Patients: Hospitalized coronavirus disease 2019 patients who underwent clinical transthoracic echocardiography. Interventions: None. Measurements and Main Results: The exposure variable of interest was right ventricular systolic pressure, calculated using the American Society of Echocardiography guidelines. Pulmonary hypertension was defined as right ventricular systolic pressure greater than 40 mm Hg. Left heart filling pressure was estimated with Nagueh's method for pulmonary artery occlusion pressure using E/e' ratio, and normal was considered pulmonary artery occlusion pressure less than 16 mm Hg. Clinical characteristics and outcomes were compared between the patients with and without pulmonary hypertension. A total of 73 patients (median age 66 yr [57-75 yr]; 46% women) were included. Median right ventricular systolic pressure was 39 mm Hg (interquartile range, 32-50 mm Hg), and 36 patients (49.3%) had evidence of pulmonary hypertension. Patients with pulmonary hypertension were more likely to require ICU admission (86% vs 65%; p = 0.035) and have acute respiratory distress syndrome (72% vs 49%; p = 0.0053) than those without. In-hospital mortality was 26% for those with pulmonary hypertension compared with 14% for those without (p = 0.19). Patients with pulmonary hypertension had higher median-estimated pulmonary artery occlusion pressure (17.4 mm Hg [12.7-21.3 mm Hg] vs 12.1 mm Hg [10.0-14.1 mm Hg]; p = 0.0008), and elevated left heart filling pressure was present in 59% of those with pulmonary hypertension. Conclusions: Pulmonary hypertension is common in hospitalized patients with coronavirus disease 2019 and is associated with poor clinical outcomes. Left ventricular filling pressure is elevated in over half of those with pulmonary hypertension and may represent a target to reduce right ventricular afterload and potentially improve outcomes in coronavirus disease 2019.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)E0227
JournalCritical Care Explorations
Volume2
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 30 2020

Keywords

  • coronavirus
  • coronavirus disease 2019
  • critical illness
  • pulmonary occlusion pressure
  • right ventricular function

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine

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