UMEM Educational Pearls

Acute LV Dysfunction in the Critically Ill

  • Approximately one-third of critically ill hospitalized patients develop acute LV dysfunction, most often due to a stress-induced cardiomyopathy.
  • In these patients, up to 25% develop an acute dynamic LV outflow tract obstruction.
  • Consider acute LV outflow tract obstruction in hypotensive patients with a new systolic ejection murmur in the left parasternal area.
  • Aggressive IVFs is central to the management of these patients with LV outflow tract obstruction.


Chockalingam A, Mehra A, Dorairajan S, et al. Acute left ventricular dysfunction in the critically ill. Chest 2010; 138:198-207