Front Cardiovasc Med. 2021 May 21;8:663864. doi: 10.3389/fcvm.2021.663864. eCollection 2021.
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) was initially regarded as a disease of the lungs, which manifests as an acute respiratory illness and pneumonia, although more recently cardiac complications have been well-characterised. Serological cardiac biomarkers have been used to define acute myocardial injury, with significant elevation of high-sensitivity cardiac troponin (hs-cTn) associated with poor prognosis. Accordingly, 20-25% patients with acute myocardial injury (as defined by an elevated hs-cTn greater than the 99th percentile) have clinical signs of heart failure and increased mortality. An important outstanding clinical question is how best to determine the extent and nature of cardiac involvement in COVID-19. Non-invasive cardiac imaging has a well-established role in assessing cardiac structure and function in a wide range of cardiac diseases. It offers the potential to differentiate between direct and indirect COVID-19 effects upon the heart, providing incremental diagnostic and prognostic utility beyond the information yielded by elevated cardiac biomarkers in isolation. This review will focus on the non-invasive imaging assessment of cardiac involvement in COVID-19.