Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy: The restoration of the sequential order of contraction and relaxation of the HEART ATRIA and HEART VENTRICLES by atrio-biventricular pacing.Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy Devices: Types of artificial pacemakers with implantable leads to be placed at multiple intracardial sites. They are used to treat various cardiac conduction disturbances which interfere with the timing of contraction of the ventricles. They may or may not include defibrillating electrodes (IMPLANTABLE DEFIBRILLATORS) as well.Cardiac Pacing, Artificial: Regulation of the rate of contraction of the heart muscles by an artificial pacemaker.Heart Failure: A heterogeneous condition in which the heart is unable to pump out sufficient blood to meet the metabolic need of the body. Heart failure can be caused by structural defects, functional abnormalities (VENTRICULAR DYSFUNCTION), or a sudden overload beyond its capacity. Chronic heart failure is more common than acute heart failure which results from sudden insult to cardiac function, such as MYOCARDIAL INFARCTION.Pacemaker, Artificial: A device designed to stimulate, by electric impulses, contraction of the heart muscles. It may be temporary (external) or permanent (internal or internal-external).Defibrillators, Implantable: Implantable devices which continuously monitor the electrical activity of the heart and automatically detect and terminate ventricular tachycardia (TACHYCARDIA, VENTRICULAR) and VENTRICULAR FIBRILLATION. They consist of an impulse generator, batteries, and electrodes.Bundle-Branch Block: A form of heart block in which the electrical stimulation of HEART VENTRICLES is interrupted at either one of the branches of BUNDLE OF HIS thus preventing the simultaneous depolarization of the two ventricles.Coronary Sinus: A short vein that collects about two thirds of the venous blood from the MYOCARDIUM and drains into the RIGHT ATRIUM. Coronary sinus, normally located between the LEFT ATRIUM and LEFT VENTRICLE on the posterior surface of the heart, can serve as an anatomical reference for cardiac procedures.Ventricular Dysfunction, Left: A condition in which the LEFT VENTRICLE of the heart was functionally impaired. This condition usually leads to HEART FAILURE; MYOCARDIAL INFARCTION; and other cardiovascular complications. Diagnosis is made by measuring the diminished ejection fraction and a depressed level of motility of the left ventricular wall.Ventricular Remodeling: The geometric and structural changes that the HEART VENTRICLES undergo, usually following MYOCARDIAL INFARCTION. It comprises expansion of the infarct and dilatation of the healthy ventricle segments. While most prevalent in the left ventricle, it can also occur in the right ventricle.Stroke Volume: The amount of BLOOD pumped out of the HEART per beat, not to be confused with cardiac output (volume/time). It is calculated as the difference between the end-diastolic volume and the end-systolic volume.Treatment Outcome: Evaluation undertaken to assess the results or consequences of management and procedures used in combating disease in order to determine the efficacy, effectiveness, safety, and practicability of these interventions in individual cases or series.Heart Ventricles: The lower right and left chambers of the heart. The right ventricle pumps venous BLOOD into the LUNGS and the left ventricle pumps oxygenated blood into the systemic arterial circulation.Echocardiography: Ultrasonic recording of the size, motion, and composition of the heart and surrounding tissues. The standard approach is transthoracic.Prosthesis Implantation: Surgical insertion of a prosthesis.Electrocardiography: Recording of the moment-to-moment electromotive forces of the HEART as projected onto various sites on the body's surface, delineated as a scalar function of time. The recording is monitored by a tracing on slow moving chart paper or by observing it on a cardioscope, which is a CATHODE RAY TUBE DISPLAY.Electrodes, Implanted: Surgically placed electric conductors through which ELECTRIC STIMULATION is delivered to or electrical activity is recorded from a specific point inside the body.Ventricular Function, Left: The hemodynamic and electrophysiological action of the left HEART VENTRICLE. Its measurement is an important aspect of the clinical evaluation of patients with heart disease to determine the effects of the disease on cardiac performance.Cardiomyopathy, Dilated: A form of CARDIAC MUSCLE disease that is characterized by ventricular dilation, VENTRICULAR DYSFUNCTION, and HEART FAILURE. Risk factors include SMOKING; ALCOHOL DRINKING; HYPERTENSION; INFECTION; PREGNANCY; and mutations in the LMNA gene encoding LAMIN TYPE A, a NUCLEAR LAMINA protein.Echocardiography, Doppler: Measurement of intracardiac blood flow using an M-mode and/or two-dimensional (2-D) echocardiogram while simultaneously recording the spectrum of the audible Doppler signal (e.g., velocity, direction, amplitude, intensity, timing) reflected from the moving column of red blood cells.Heart Conduction System: An impulse-conducting system composed of modified cardiac muscle, having the power of spontaneous rhythmicity and conduction more highly developed than the rest of the heart.Arrhythmias, Cardiac: Any disturbances of the normal rhythmic beating of the heart or MYOCARDIAL CONTRACTION. Cardiac arrhythmias can be classified by the abnormalities in HEART RATE, disorders of electrical impulse generation, or impulse conduction.Cardiac Output, Low: A state of subnormal or depressed cardiac output at rest or during stress. It is a characteristic of CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASES, including congenital, valvular, rheumatic, hypertensive, coronary, and cardiomyopathic. The serious form of low cardiac output is characterized by marked reduction in STROKE VOLUME, and systemic vasoconstriction resulting in cold, pale, and sometimes cyanotic extremities.Cicatrix: The fibrous tissue that replaces normal tissue during the process of WOUND HEALING.Ventricular Dysfunction: A condition in which HEART VENTRICLES exhibit impaired function.Electric Countershock: An electrical current applied to the HEART to terminate a disturbance of its rhythm, ARRHYTHMIAS, CARDIAC. (Stedman, 25th ed)Cardiomyopathies: A group of diseases in which the dominant feature is the involvement of the CARDIAC MUSCLE itself. Cardiomyopathies are classified according to their predominant pathophysiological features (DILATED CARDIOMYOPATHY; HYPERTROPHIC CARDIOMYOPATHY; RESTRICTIVE CARDIOMYOPATHY) or their etiological/pathological factors (CARDIOMYOPATHY, ALCOHOLIC; ENDOCARDIAL FIBROELASTOSIS).Cardiography, Impedance: A type of impedance plethysmography in which bioelectrical impedance is measured between electrodes positioned around the neck and around the lower thorax. It is used principally to calculate stroke volume and cardiac volume, but it is also related to myocardial contractility, thoracic fluid content, and circulation to the extremities.Mitral Valve Insufficiency: Backflow of blood from the LEFT VENTRICLE into the LEFT ATRIUM due to imperfect closure of the MITRAL VALVE. This can lead to mitral valve regurgitation.Atrioventricular Node: A small nodular mass of specialized muscle fibers located in the interatrial septum near the opening of the coronary sinus. It gives rise to the atrioventricular bundle of the conduction system of the heart.Follow-Up Studies: Studies in which individuals or populations are followed to assess the outcome of exposures, procedures, or effects of a characteristic, e.g., occurrence of disease.Echocardiography, Doppler, Color: Echocardiography applying the Doppler effect, with the superposition of flow information as colors on a gray scale in a real-time image.Predictive Value of Tests: In screening and diagnostic tests, the probability that a person with a positive test is a true positive (i.e., has the disease), is referred to as the predictive value of a positive test; whereas, the predictive value of a negative test is the probability that the person with a negative test does not have the disease. Predictive value is related to the sensitivity and specificity of the test.Patient Selection: Criteria and standards used for the determination of the appropriateness of the inclusion of patients with specific conditions in proposed treatment plans and the criteria used for the inclusion of subjects in various clinical trials and other research protocols.Electrophysiologic Techniques, Cardiac: Methods to induce and measure electrical activities at specific sites in the heart to diagnose and treat problems with the heart's electrical system.Ventricular Function, Right: The hemodynamic and electrophysiological action of the right HEART VENTRICLE.Prospective Studies: Observation of a population for a sufficient number of persons over a sufficient number of years to generate incidence or mortality rates subsequent to the selection of the study group.Myocardial Contraction: Contractile activity of the MYOCARDIUM.Echocardiography, Three-Dimensional: Echocardiography amplified by the addition of depth to the conventional two-dimensional ECHOCARDIOGRAPHY visualizing only the length and width of the heart. Three-dimensional ultrasound imaging was first described in 1961 but its application to echocardiography did not take place until 1974. (Mayo Clin Proc 1993;68:221-40)Electric Injuries: Injuries caused by electric currents. The concept excludes electric burns (BURNS, ELECTRIC), but includes accidental electrocution and electric shock.Dextrocardia: A congenital defect in which the heart is located on the right side of the THORAX instead of on the left side (levocardia, the normal position). When dextrocardia is accompanied with inverted HEART ATRIA, a right-sided STOMACH, and a left-sided LIVER, the combination is called dextrocardia with SITUS INVERSUS. Dextrocardia may adversely affect other thoracic organs.Time Factors: Elements of limited time intervals, contributing to particular results or situations.Systole: Period of contraction of the HEART, especially of the HEART VENTRICLES.Ventricular Dysfunction, Right: A condition in which the RIGHT VENTRICLE of the heart was functionally impaired. This condition usually leads to HEART FAILURE or MYOCARDIAL INFARCTION, and other cardiovascular complications. Diagnosis is made by measuring the diminished ejection fraction and a depressed level of motility of the right ventricular wall.Phlebography: Radiographic visualization or recording of a vein after the injection of contrast medium.Cardiac Imaging Techniques: Visualization of the heart structure and cardiac blood flow for diagnostic evaluation or to guide cardiac procedures via techniques including ENDOSCOPY (cardiac endoscopy, sometimes refered to as cardioscopy), RADIONUCLIDE IMAGING; MAGNETIC RESONANCE IMAGING; TOMOGRAPHY; or ULTRASONOGRAPHY.Severity of Illness Index: Levels within a diagnostic group which are established by various measurement criteria applied to the seriousness of a patient's disorder.Therapy, Computer-Assisted: Computer systems utilized as adjuncts in the treatment of disease.Myocardial Ischemia: A disorder of cardiac function caused by insufficient blood flow to the muscle tissue of the heart. The decreased blood flow may be due to narrowing of the coronary arteries (CORONARY ARTERY DISEASE), to obstruction by a thrombus (CORONARY THROMBOSIS), or less commonly, to diffuse narrowing of arterioles and other small vessels within the heart. Severe interruption of the blood supply to the myocardial tissue may result in necrosis of cardiac muscle (MYOCARDIAL INFARCTION).Equipment Failure: Failure of equipment to perform to standard. The failure may be due to defects or improper use.Body Surface Potential Mapping: Recording of regional electrophysiological information by analysis of surface potentials to give a complete picture of the effects of the currents from the heart on the body surface. It has been applied to the diagnosis of old inferior myocardial infarction, localization of the bypass pathway in Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome, recognition of ventricular hypertrophy, estimation of the size of a myocardial infarct, and the effects of different interventions designed to reduce infarct size. The limiting factor at present is the complexity of the recording and analysis, which requires 100 or more electrodes, sophisticated instrumentation, and dedicated personnel. (Braunwald, Heart Disease, 4th ed)Hemodynamics: The movement and the forces involved in the movement of the blood through the CARDIOVASCULAR SYSTEM.Echocardiography, Doppler, Pulsed: Echocardiography applying the Doppler effect, with velocity detection combined with range discrimination. Short bursts of ultrasound are transmitted at regular intervals and the echoes are demodulated as they return.Tachycardia, Ventricular: An abnormally rapid ventricular rhythm usually in excess of 150 beats per minute. It is generated within the ventricle below the BUNDLE OF HIS, either as autonomic impulse formation or reentrant impulse conduction. Depending on the etiology, onset of ventricular tachycardia can be paroxysmal (sudden) or nonparoxysmal, its wide QRS complexes can be uniform or polymorphic, and the ventricular beating may be independent of the atrial beating (AV dissociation).Atrial Fibrillation: Abnormal cardiac rhythm that is characterized by rapid, uncoordinated firing of electrical impulses in the upper chambers of the heart (HEART ATRIA). In such case, blood cannot be effectively pumped into the lower chambers of the heart (HEART VENTRICLES). It is caused by abnormal impulse generation.Heart Atria: The chambers of the heart, to which the BLOOD returns from the circulation.Recovery of Function: A partial or complete return to the normal or proper physiologic activity of an organ or part following disease or trauma.Kaplan-Meier Estimate: A nonparametric method of compiling LIFE TABLES or survival tables. It combines calculated probabilities of survival and estimates to allow for observations occurring beyond a measurement threshold, which are assumed to occur randomly. Time intervals are defined as ending each time an event occurs and are therefore unequal. (From Last, A Dictionary of Epidemiology, 1995)Cardiac Output: The volume of BLOOD passing through the HEART per unit of time. It is usually expressed as liters (volume) per minute so as not to be confused with STROKE VOLUME (volume per beat).Fluoroscopy: Production of an image when x-rays strike a fluorescent screen.Gated Blood-Pool Imaging: Radionuclide ventriculography where scintigraphic data is acquired during repeated cardiac cycles at specific times in the cycle, using an electrocardiographic synchronizer or gating device. Analysis of right ventricular function is difficult with this technique; that is best evaluated by first-pass ventriculography (VENTRICULOGRAPHY, FIRST-PASS).Atrioventricular Block: Impaired impulse conduction from HEART ATRIA to HEART VENTRICLES. AV block can mean delayed or completely blocked impulse conduction.Endocardium: The innermost layer of the heart, comprised of endothelial cells.Death, Sudden, Cardiac: Unexpected rapid natural death due to cardiovascular collapse within one hour of initial symptoms. It is usually caused by the worsening of existing heart diseases. The sudden onset of symptoms, such as CHEST PAIN and CARDIAC ARRHYTHMIAS, particularly VENTRICULAR TACHYCARDIA, can lead to the loss of consciousness and cardiac arrest followed by biological death. (from Braunwald's Heart Disease: A Textbook of Cardiovascular Medicine, 7th ed., 2005)Retrospective Studies: Studies used to test etiologic hypotheses in which inferences about an exposure to putative causal factors are derived from data relating to characteristics of persons under study or to events or experiences in their past. The essential feature is that some of the persons under study have the disease or outcome of interest and their characteristics are compared with those of unaffected persons.Prognosis: A prediction of the probable outcome of a disease based on a individual's condition and the usual course of the disease as seen in similar situations.Reproducibility of Results: The statistical reproducibility of measurements (often in a clinical context), including the testing of instrumentation or techniques to obtain reproducible results. The concept includes reproducibility of physiological measurements, which may be used to develop rules to assess probability or prognosis, or response to a stimulus; reproducibility of occurrence of a condition; and reproducibility of experimental results.Equipment Design: Methods of creating machines and devices.Phrenic Nerve: The motor nerve of the diaphragm. The phrenic nerve fibers originate in the cervical spinal column (mostly C4) and travel through the cervical plexus to the diaphragm.Sensitivity and Specificity: Binary classification measures to assess test results. Sensitivity or recall rate is the proportion of true positives. Specificity is the probability of correctly determining the absence of a condition. (From Last, Dictionary of Epidemiology, 2d ed)Natriuretic Peptide, Brain: A PEPTIDE that is secreted by the BRAIN and the HEART ATRIA, stored mainly in cardiac ventricular MYOCARDIUM. It can cause NATRIURESIS; DIURESIS; VASODILATION; and inhibits secretion of RENIN and ALDOSTERONE. It improves heart function. It contains 32 AMINO ACIDS.Exercise Test: Controlled physical activity which is performed in order to allow assessment of physiological functions, particularly cardiovascular and pulmonary, but also aerobic capacity. Maximal (most intense) exercise is usually required but submaximal exercise is also used.Feasibility Studies: Studies to determine the advantages or disadvantages, practicability, or capability of accomplishing a projected plan, study, or project.Treatment Failure: A measure of the quality of health care by assessment of unsuccessful results of management and procedures used in combating disease, in individual cases or series.Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic: Works about clinical trials that involve at least one test treatment and one control treatment, concurrent enrollment and follow-up of the test- and control-treated groups, and in which the treatments to be administered are selected by a random process, such as the use of a random-numbers table.Vena Cava, Superior: The venous trunk which returns blood from the head, neck, upper extremities and chest.Risk Assessment: The qualitative or quantitative estimation of the likelihood of adverse effects that may result from exposure to specified health hazards or from the absence of beneficial influences. (Last, Dictionary of Epidemiology, 1988)Exercise Tolerance: The exercise capacity of an individual as measured by endurance (maximal exercise duration and/or maximal attained work load) during an EXERCISE TEST.Heart Failure, Systolic: Heart failure caused by abnormal myocardial contraction during SYSTOLE leading to defective cardiac emptying.Heart Rate: The number of times the HEART VENTRICLES contract per unit of time, usually per minute.Psychological Techniques: Methods used in the diagnosis and treatment of behavioral, personality, and mental disorders.Ventricular Fibrillation: A potentially lethal cardiac arrhythmia that is characterized by uncoordinated extremely rapid firing of electrical impulses (400-600/min) in HEART VENTRICLES. Such asynchronous ventricular quivering or fibrillation prevents any effective cardiac output and results in unconsciousness (SYNCOPE). It is one of the major electrocardiographic patterns seen with CARDIAC ARREST.Heart-Assist Devices: Small pumps, often implantable, designed for temporarily assisting the heart, usually the LEFT VENTRICLE, to pump blood. They consist of a pumping chamber and a power source, which may be partially or totally external to the body and activated by electromagnetic motors.Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Cine: A type of imaging technique used primarily in the field of cardiology. By coordinating the fast gradient-echo MRI sequence with retrospective ECG-gating, numerous short time frames evenly spaced in the cardiac cycle are produced. These images are laced together in a cinematic display so that wall motion of the ventricles, valve motion, and blood flow patterns in the heart and great vessels can be visualized.Heart: The hollow, muscular organ that maintains the circulation of the blood.Cardiac Volume: The volume of the HEART, usually relating to the volume of BLOOD contained within it at various periods of the cardiac cycle. The amount of blood ejected from a ventricle at each beat is STROKE VOLUME.Observer Variation: The failure by the observer to measure or identify a phenomenon accurately, which results in an error. Sources for this may be due to the observer's missing an abnormality, or to faulty technique resulting in incorrect test measurement, or to misinterpretation of the data. Two varieties are inter-observer variation (the amount observers vary from one another when reporting on the same material) and intra-observer variation (the amount one observer varies between observations when reporting more than once on the same material).Hospitalization: The confinement of a patient in a hospital.Heart Function Tests: Examinations used to diagnose and treat heart conditions.Diagnostic Imaging: Any visual display of structural or functional patterns of organs or tissues for diagnostic evaluation. It includes measuring physiologic and metabolic responses to physical and chemical stimuli, as well as ultramicroscopy.Dogs: The domestic dog, Canis familiaris, comprising about 400 breeds, of the carnivore family CANIDAE. They are worldwide in distribution and live in association with people. (Walker's Mammals of the World, 5th ed, p1065)Single-Blind Method: A method in which either the observer(s) or the subject(s) is kept ignorant of the group to which the subjects are assigned.Survival Analysis: A class of statistical procedures for estimating the survival function (function of time, starting with a population 100% well at a given time and providing the percentage of the population still well at later times). The survival analysis is then used for making inferences about the effects of treatments, prognostic factors, exposures, and other covariates on the function.Ventricular Pressure: The pressure within a CARDIAC VENTRICLE. Ventricular pressure waveforms can be measured in the beating heart by catheterization or estimated using imaging techniques (e.g., DOPPLER ECHOCARDIOGRAPHY). The information is useful in evaluating the function of the MYOCARDIUM; CARDIAC VALVES; and PERICARDIUM, particularly with simultaneous measurement of other (e.g., aortic or atrial) pressures.Multicenter Studies as Topic: Works about controlled studies which are planned and carried out by several cooperating institutions to assess certain variables and outcomes in specific patient populations, for example, a multicenter study of congenital anomalies in children.Pericardium: A conical fibro-serous sac surrounding the HEART and the roots of the great vessels (AORTA; VENAE CAVAE; PULMONARY ARTERY). Pericardium consists of two sacs: the outer fibrous pericardium and the inner serous pericardium. The latter consists of an outer parietal layer facing the fibrous pericardium, and an inner visceral layer (epicardium) resting next to the heart, and a pericardial cavity between these two layers.Myocardial Perfusion Imaging: The creation and display of functional images showing where the blood is flowing into the MYOCARDIUM by following over time the distribution of tracers injected into the blood stream.Cardiac Catheterization: Procedures in which placement of CARDIAC CATHETERS is performed for therapeutic or diagnostic procedures.Tomography, Emission-Computed, Single-Photon: A method of computed tomography that uses radionuclides which emit a single photon of a given energy. The camera is rotated 180 or 360 degrees around the patient to capture images at multiple positions along the arc. The computer is then used to reconstruct the transaxial, sagittal, and coronal images from the 3-dimensional distribution of radionuclides in the organ. The advantages of SPECT are that it can be used to observe biochemical and physiological processes as well as size and volume of the organ. The disadvantage is that, unlike positron-emission tomography where the positron-electron annihilation results in the emission of 2 photons at 180 degrees from each other, SPECT requires physical collimation to line up the photons, which results in the loss of many available photons and hence degrades the image.Monitoring, Ambulatory: The use of electronic equipment to observe or record physiologic processes while the patient undergoes normal daily activities.Models, Cardiovascular: Theoretical representations that simulate the behavior or activity of the cardiovascular system, processes, or phenomena; includes the use of mathematical equations, computers and other electronic equipment.Myocardium: The muscle tissue of the HEART. It is composed of striated, involuntary muscle cells (MYOCYTES, CARDIAC) connected to form the contractile pump to generate blood flow.Catheter Ablation: Removal of tissue with electrical current delivered via electrodes positioned at the distal end of a catheter. Energy sources are commonly direct current (DC-shock) or alternating current at radiofrequencies (usually 750 kHz). The technique is used most often to ablate the AV junction and/or accessory pathways in order to interrupt AV conduction and produce AV block in the treatment of various tachyarrhythmias.EuropeVentricular Premature Complexes: A type of cardiac arrhythmia with premature contractions of the HEART VENTRICLES. It is characterized by the premature QRS complex on ECG that is of abnormal shape and great duration (generally >129 msec). It is the most common form of all cardiac arrhythmias. Premature ventricular complexes have no clinical significance except in concurrence with heart diseases.Equipment Failure Analysis: The evaluation of incidents involving the loss of function of a device. These evaluations are used for a variety of purposes such as to determine the failure rates, the causes of failures, costs of failures, and the reliability and maintainability of devices.Risk Factors: An aspect of personal behavior or lifestyle, environmental exposure, or inborn or inherited characteristic, which, on the basis of epidemiologic evidence, is known to be associated with a health-related condition considered important to prevent.Heart Block: Impaired conduction of cardiac impulse that can occur anywhere along the conduction pathway, such as between the SINOATRIAL NODE and the right atrium (SA block) or between atria and ventricles (AV block). Heart blocks can be classified by the duration, frequency, or completeness of conduction block. Reversibility depends on the degree of structural or functional defects.Survival Rate: The proportion of survivors in a group, e.g., of patients, studied and followed over a period, or the proportion of persons in a specified group alive at the beginning of a time interval who survive to the end of the interval. It is often studied using life table methods.Sleep Apnea, Central: A condition associated with multiple episodes of sleep apnea which are distinguished from obstructive sleep apnea (SLEEP APNEA, OBSTRUCTIVE) by the complete cessation of efforts to breathe. This disorder is associated with dysfunction of central nervous system centers that regulate respiration.Diagnosis, Computer-Assisted: Application of computer programs designed to assist the physician in solving a diagnostic problem.Multivariate Analysis: A set of techniques used when variation in several variables has to be studied simultaneously. In statistics, multivariate analysis is interpreted as any analytic method that allows simultaneous study of two or more dependent variables.Atrial Function: The hemodynamic and electrophysiological action of the HEART ATRIA.Myocytes, Cardiac: Striated muscle cells found in the heart. They are derived from cardiac myoblasts (MYOBLASTS, CARDIAC).Tricuspid Valve Insufficiency: Backflow of blood from the RIGHT VENTRICLE into the RIGHT ATRIUM due to imperfect closure of the TRICUSPID VALVE.ROC Curve: A graphic means for assessing the ability of a screening test to discriminate between healthy and diseased persons; may also be used in other studies, e.g., distinguishing stimuli responses as to a faint stimuli or nonstimuli.Electrocardiography, Ambulatory: Method in which prolonged electrocardiographic recordings are made on a portable tape recorder (Holter-type system) or solid-state device ("real-time" system), while the patient undergoes normal daily activities. It is useful in the diagnosis and management of intermittent cardiac arrhythmias and transient myocardial ischemia.Oxygen Consumption: The rate at which oxygen is used by a tissue; microliters of oxygen STPD used per milligram of tissue per hour; the rate at which oxygen enters the blood from alveolar gas, equal in the steady state to the consumption of oxygen by tissue metabolism throughout the body. (Stedman, 25th ed, p346)Ventricular Function: The hemodynamic and electrophysiological action of the HEART VENTRICLES.Heart Diseases: Pathological conditions involving the HEART including its structural and functional abnormalities.Quality of Life: A generic concept reflecting concern with the modification and enhancement of life attributes, e.g., physical, political, moral and social environment; the overall condition of a human life.Proportional Hazards Models: Statistical models used in survival analysis that assert that the effect of the study factors on the hazard rate in the study population is multiplicative and does not change over time.Statistics, Nonparametric: A class of statistical methods applicable to a large set of probability distributions used to test for correlation, location, independence, etc. In most nonparametric statistical tests, the original scores or observations are replaced by another variable containing less information. An important class of nonparametric tests employs the ordinal properties of the data. Another class of tests uses information about whether an observation is above or below some fixed value such as the median, and a third class is based on the frequency of the occurrence of runs in the data. (From McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms, 4th ed, p1284; Corsini, Concise Encyclopedia of Psychology, 1987, p764-5)Electrodes: Electric conductors through which electric currents enter or leave a medium, whether it be an electrolytic solution, solid, molten mass, gas, or vacuum.Chi-Square Distribution: A distribution in which a variable is distributed like the sum of the squares of any given independent random variable, each of which has a normal distribution with mean of zero and variance of one. The chi-square test is a statistical test based on comparison of a test statistic to a chi-square distribution. The oldest of these tests are used to detect whether two or more population distributions differ from one another.Echocardiography, Stress: A method of recording heart motion and internal structures by combining ultrasonic imaging with exercise testing (EXERCISE TEST) or pharmacologic stress.Imaging, Three-Dimensional: The process of generating three-dimensional images by electronic, photographic, or other methods. For example, three-dimensional images can be generated by assembling multiple tomographic images with the aid of a computer, while photographic 3-D images (HOLOGRAPHY) can be made by exposing film to the interference pattern created when two laser light sources shine on an object.Chronic Disease: Diseases which have one or more of the following characteristics: they are permanent, leave residual disability, are caused by nonreversible pathological alteration, require special training of the patient for rehabilitation, or may be expected to require a long period of supervision, observation, or care. (Dictionary of Health Services Management, 2d ed)Walking: An activity in which the body advances at a slow to moderate pace by moving the feet in a coordinated fashion. This includes recreational walking, walking for fitness, and competitive race-walking.Diastole: Post-systolic relaxation of the HEART, especially the HEART VENTRICLES.Algorithms: A procedure consisting of a sequence of algebraic formulas and/or logical steps to calculate or determine a given task.Magnetic Resonance Imaging: Non-invasive method of demonstrating internal anatomy based on the principle that atomic nuclei in a strong magnetic field absorb pulses of radiofrequency energy and emit them as radiowaves which can be reconstructed into computerized images. The concept includes proton spin tomographic techniques.Double-Blind Method: A method of studying a drug or procedure in which both the subjects and investigators are kept unaware of who is actually getting which specific treatment.Image Interpretation, Computer-Assisted: Methods developed to aid in the interpretation of ultrasound, radiographic images, etc., for diagnosis of disease.Tachycardia, Ectopic Atrial: Abnormally rapid heartbeats originating from one or more automatic foci (nonsinus pacemakers) in the HEART ATRIUM but away from the SINOATRIAL NODE. Unlike the reentry mechanism, automatic tachycardia speeds up and slows down gradually. The episode is characterized by a HEART RATE between 135 to less than 200 beats per minute and lasting 30 seconds or longer.Cost-Benefit Analysis: A method of comparing the cost of a program with its expected benefits in dollars (or other currency). The benefit-to-cost ratio is a measure of total return expected per unit of money spent. This analysis generally excludes consideration of factors that are not measured ultimately in economic terms. Cost effectiveness compares alternative ways to achieve a specific set of results.Cross-Over Studies: Studies comparing two or more treatments or interventions in which the subjects or patients, upon completion of the course of one treatment, are switched to another. In the case of two treatments, A and B, half the subjects are randomly allocated to receive these in the order A, B and half to receive them in the order B, A. A criticism of this design is that effects of the first treatment may carry over into the period when the second is given. (Last, A Dictionary of Epidemiology, 2d ed)Adrenergic beta-Antagonists: Drugs that bind to but do not activate beta-adrenergic receptors thereby blocking the actions of beta-adrenergic agonists. Adrenergic beta-antagonists are used for treatment of hypertension, cardiac arrhythmias, angina pectoris, glaucoma, migraine headaches, and anxiety.Quality-Adjusted Life Years: A measurement index derived from a modification of standard life-table procedures and designed to take account of the quality as well as the duration of survival. This index can be used in assessing the outcome of health care procedures or services. (BIOETHICS Thesaurus, 1994)