Correlation of continuous wave doppler velocities with cardiac catheterization gradients: An experimental model of aortic stenosis

Mikel D. Smith, Philip L. Dawson, Jonathan L. Elion, David C. Booth, Rodney Handshoe, Oi Ling Kwan, Gary F. Earle, Anthony N. DeMaria

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

56 Scopus citations


The purpose of this study was to use a canine preparation of experimental aortic stenosis to compare estimates of pressure gradient derived from continuous wave Doppler ultrasound with gradients measured directly by catheterization. Aortic stenosis was created in six mongrel dogs by placing an elastic band around the aorta. Eighty-eight different pressure gradients, ranging from 5 to 160 mm Hg, were produced by variable tightening of the aortic band. Pressure gradients were measured by micromanometer-tipped catheters placed in the left ventricle and aorta. Doppler spectral signals were simultaneously obtained using a 2.0 MHz nonimaging transducer placed directly on the surface of the ascending aorta. Doppler and pressure recordings were analyzed using a custom-designed software program to measure maximal instantaneous, mean and peak to peak gradients, as well as ejection and acceleration times. Maximal instantaneous Doppler gradient showed an excellent linear correlation with maximal instantaneous catheterization gradient (r = 0.98, SEE = 5.3 mm Hg). The correlation of Doppler-estimated maximal gradient to peak to peak catheterization gradient was also linear (r = 0.97, SEE = 6.2 mm Hg) but resulted in a systematic overestimation of pressure drop (mean overestimation = 9.0 mm Hg). Measurement of the Doppler gradient at mid-systole resulted in a more accurate correlation with the peak to peak catheterization gradient (r = 0.98, SEE = 6.1 mm Hg) and eliminated the problem of overestimation. An excellent correlation was also seen between Doppler and catheterization-derived mean gradients (r = 0.98, SEE = 3.5 mm Hg), whereas correlations between Doppler and catheterization ejection and acceleration times were only fair (r = 0.79 and r = 0.57, respectively). The results in this experimental model suggest that pressure gradients obtained from continuous wave Doppler spectral patterns are quite accurate in predicting corresponding cardiac catheterization measurements. In addition, an alternate method using the Doppler mid-systolic velocity appears to offer advantages in the prediction of the peak to peak gradient at cardiac catheterization.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1306-1314
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of the American College of Cardiology
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1985

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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