Subclinical Left Ventricular Systolic Dysfunction Detected by 2D Speckle-Tracking in Young Adults Post–COVID-19 Recovery

Document Type : Original Article


Cardiovascular Medicine Department, Tanta Faculty of Medicine, Egypt.


Background: Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) was declared as a pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO) on March 11, 2020.  Apart from respiratory findings, cardiac involvement has been highlighted by some studies. COVID-19 is increasing rapidly among young adults. The present study was designed to evaluate left ventricular function using speckle-tracking echocardiography in young adult COVID-19 patients who underwent home recovery.
Methods: The study assessed 40 patients aged between 18 and 39 years who recovered at home from COVID-19 and 20 healthy control subjects. All the participants underwent evaluations of left and right ventricular function via the conventional and global longitudinal strain (GLS) technique measured by speckle-tracking echocardiography.
Results: Heart rate was significantly higher in the post–COVID-19 group (P=0.024). The patients were assessed for a mean period of 38.8 days (standard deviation=10.9 d) after negative COVID-19 testing. In the post–COVID-19 group, 19 patients (47%) reported ongoing dyspnea: 13 had dyspnea during ordinary daily activities and 6 had dyspnea during less-than-ordinary daily activities. Nine patients (23%) had chest pain, 8 (20%) had palpitations, 22 (55%) had fatigue, and 4 (10%) had joint pain. The left ventricular GLS value for the post–COVID-19 group was significantly impaired compared with the control group (P=0.006).
Conclusions: Among our young adult patients, who had recovered from COVID-19 at home, left ventricular GLS was affected, which may indicate the subclinical impairment of left ventricular systolic function. (Iranian Heart Journal 2022; 23(2): 106-115)


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