Background: One of the major organs affected in neonatal sepsis is the heart. Echocardiogram provides real-time information on the cardiovascular performance rather than dependence on the clinical signs alone, which might lead to misjudgment.
Aim of the Work: To assess left ventricular (LV) functions in septic neonates early after admission using transthoracic color Doppler Echocardiography.
Patients and Methods: Echocardiography was done to 30 septic and 30 nonseptic newborns who were divided among 4 groups (septic full-term, 14; septic preterm, 16; nonseptic full-term, 21; and nonseptic preterm, 9). Comparisons were made among the 4 groups using analysis of variance and post hoc test regarding the systolic function (using ejection fraction and fractional shortening), the diastolic function (using the early patrial peak/atrial peak flow velocity ratio), and the global LV function (using myocardial performance index).
Results: The E-wave and the early peak flow velocity/atrial peak flow velocity ratio were significantly lower in the septic neonates, whether full-term or premature, compared to their corresponding age groups in the nonseptic newborns, suggesting LV diastolic dysfunction (P < 0.001 and P < 0.014, respectively). No difference was found in the diastolic function between the full-term and the preterm neonates whether lying within the septic group or in the nonseptic group. Myocardial performance index was significantly higher in the septic neonates who died than in the survivors (P < 0.001).
Conclusion: Neonatal sepsis is associated with LV diastolic dysfunction.