Intrafamilial variability of noncompaction of the ventricular myocardium

Academic Article


  • Background: Noncompaction of the ventricular myocardium (NVM) is a relatively uncommon form of cardiomyopathy characterized by a highly trabeculated myocardium. This report describes the clinical and genetic evaluation of a 3-generation kindred. Methods: Family members were initially evaluated by 2-dimensional echocardiography. Most family members with signs of NVM were further evaluated by magnetic resonance imaging. Genetic analyses included mutational screening of the taffazin (TAZ) and α-dystrobrevin (DTNA) genes. Results: Eight family members had signs of NVM. Considerable interindividual variation was noted in terms of spatial distribution and severity of affected regions and ventricular dysfunction. Depending on which of 2 previously proposed quantitative diagnostic criteria were used and where ventricular myocardial measurements were taken, between 4 and 7 of these individuals had findings that were considered diagnostic. Magnetic resonance imaging served as a useful adjunct for confirming or establishing diagnoses in all 8 individuals. No mutation was found in TAZ or DTNA. Conclusions: This kindred demonstrates the remarkably wide phenotypic spectrum that can be seen in familial cases of NVM, ranging from prenatal/neonatal lethality to a complete lack of symptoms. The fact that all 8 affected individuals either have shown improvement in ventricular function or symptoms during childhood or have been asymptomatic indicates that NVM can have a relatively benign course. The degree and nature of cardiac involvement are also quite varied, and there is a weak correlation with ventricular function and symptoms. Evaluation of families with NVM requires careful assessment that uses a combination of imaging techniques and diagnostic criteria. © 2006 Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.
  • Authors

    Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Johnson MT; Zhang S; Gilkeson R; Ameduri R; Chebotarev O; Kenton AB; Bowles KR; Towbin JA; Robin NH; Brozovich F
  • Start Page

  • 1012.e7
  • End Page

  • 1012.e14
  • Volume

  • 151
  • Issue

  • 5