CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 · Ind J Car Dis Wom 2017; 02(04): 072-076
DOI: 10.1055/s-0038-1624065
Original Article
Women in Cardiology and Related Sciences

Structural and Functional Changes in Maternal Heart during Pregnancy: An Echocardiographic Study

Sunanda Kasula
1  Department of OBG, Government Medical College, Hanamkonda, Telangana, India
Sumalatha Beeram
2  Department of OBG, Gandhi Medical College, Secunderabad, Telangana, India
Ramakrishna Janapati
3  Department of Cardiology, Citizen Hospitals, Hyderabad, Telangana, India
Indrani Garre
4  Department of Cardiology, NIMS, Hyderabad, Telangana, India
› Author Affiliations
Further Information

Publication History

Publication Date:
04 May 2018 (online)


Background Pregnancy is associated with profound physiologic alterations in the maternal cardiovascular system. This study aimed to investigate maternal cardiac performance during normal pregnancy by two-dimensional echocardiography parameters and various functional and structural alterations.

Methods This was a cross-sectional study of 100 normal pregnant women who attended the antenatal clinic, and all participants had clinical history, physical examination, and 12-lead electrocardiogram. Two-dimensional, M-mode, and Doppler echocardiography was done. Echocardiographic parameters were compared with normal age-matched controls from previously published studies.

Results The mean age of the study group was 23.35 ± 3.05 years, mean systolic blood pressure was 110.5 ± 8.69 mm Hg, and mean diastolic blood pressure was 71.6 ± 6.77 mm Hg. There was an increase in left atrial (LA) diameter, left ventricular end diastolic diameter, and interventricular septum (IVS) thickness as gestational age advanced. There was a gradual decrease in E-wave velocity, and E/A ratio increased during the second trimester and decreased during the third trimester. The E-wave deceleration time increased with gestational age There was no statistically significant difference between IVS thickness and E/A ratio (p = 1.000).

Conclusion Cardiac chamber dimensions, LV wall thickness, and LA size, most indices of systolic function although within normal range, were significantly higher in pregnant Asian Indian women than in the controls. This study shows that the subtle reduction in myocardial compliance appears as an adaptive response to changes of preload, afterload, and LV geometry.