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Prognostic implications of left ventricular strain by speckle-tracking echocardiography in population-based studies: a systematic review protocol of the published literature

16 Jul 2018


Left ventricular (LV) strain by speckle-tracking echocardiography (STE) is a comparatively new prognostic marker. Meta-analyses relating LV strain by STE to outcomes have been conducted in selected patient-based populations with established or suspected cardiovascular (CV) diseases. However, the evidence related to population-based studies of community-dwelling individuals is uncertain. The aim of this study is to provide a comprehensive systematic review and analysis of the current available literature regarding LV strain by STE as a predictor of adverse outcomes in population-based studies.

Methods and analyses

Thesaurus and text-word searching will be used to search two online databases (MEDLINE and EMBASE) and additional sources will be identified from citation metrics and reference lists’ search. Dual search results’ screening, data extraction and quality assessment will be performed. Cohort studies of community/population-based samples who have had STE and followed up longitudinally for mortal and morbid events, and published in English and peer-reviewed journals will be included. Primary outcome will be all-cause mortality whereas secondary outcomes will be composite cardiac and CV end points. Risk of bias will be assessed using Newcastle-Ottawa Quality Assessment Scale of cohort studies that will be modified as appropriate. Any arising discrepancies will be discussed and resolved through consensus.

Ethics and dissemination

Ethical approval is not required as this is a protocol for a systematic review. The findings of this study will be presented at scientific conferences and published in a peer-reviewed journal. Any amendments to the protocol will be documented and updated in the PROSPERO registry.

PROSPERO registration number


Click here to view the full article which appeared in BMJ Open

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