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Non-compaction of left ventricular myocardium in sub-Saharan African adults
  1. Ngoné Diaba Gaye1,
  2. Aliou Alassane Ngaïdé1,
  3. Mamadou Bassirou Bah2,
  4. Kana Babaka1,
  5. Alassane Mbaye1,
  6. Kane Abdoul1
  1. 1 Department of Cardiology, Grand Yoff General Hospital (HOGGY), Dakar, Sénégal
  2. 2 Department of Cardiology, Aristide Le Dantec, Teaching Hospital, Dakar, Sénégal
  1. Correspondence to Ngoné Diaba Gaye, Department of cardiology, Grand Yoff General Hospital, BP: 3270, Dakar, Senegal; diabagaye{at}


Background Non-compaction of the left ventricle (NCLV) is an unclassified cardiomyopathy due to intrauterine arrest of compaction of the loose interwoven meshwork. Only a few studies involving sub-Saharan Africans insmall numbers have been published. The aim of our study was to determine the diagnostic, therapeutic and prognostic aspects as well as the clinical course of NCLV in a black African population.

Methodology A multicentre retrospective study was carried out between November 2007 and June 2012 in two cardiology departments in Dakar. Patients who met the echocardiographic criteria for NCLV were included in the study.

Results 35patients with the diagnosis of NCLV were evaluated in the study. Their mean age was 47±18.4 years. Heart failure was found in 77.1% of the patients. The most frequent electrocardiographic abnormalities were left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH) (46%) and sinus tachycardia (43%). Mean non-compaction/compaction ratio was 2.84±0.68 with preferential localization in the apex of the left ventricle. The main complications observed were cardiogenic shock (23.5%), pulmonary embolism (6.3%) and ventricular tachycardia (5.9%). Diuretics and ACE inhibitors were the medications most often prescribed. Age >60 years (p=0.04), male gender (p=0.03) and the occurrence of complications during follow-up (p=0.04) were noted to be predictors of poor prognosis.

Conclusion Contrary to previous beliefs, NCLV may not be less common in black Africans than in other ethnic subgroups. Clinicians in Africa should be made aware of NCLV so that it can be diagnosed at earlier stages.

  • Isolated noncompaction of the left ventricular myocardium
  • heart failure
  • echocardiography
  • Senegal

Statistics from


  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent This was a retrospective study and the patients were not traceable at the time of the submission.

  • Ethics approval UCAD ethical committee for research.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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