Cardiac murmurs: Diagnostic clues you can pick up in a heartbeat

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The auscultatory features of heart murmurs - intensity, frequency, quality, configuration, timing, duration, and radiation - can help identify a variety of cardiac disorders. Systolic ejection murmurs have a crescendo-decrescendo configuration. These include innocent murmurs and those associated with aortic stenosis and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. Systolic murmurs associated with retrograde flow from a high-pressure chamber to a low-pressure chamber usually have a holosystolic configuration. Examples of holosystolic murmurs include mitral regurgitation, tricuspid regurgitation, and the murmur associated with a ventricular septal defect. Diastolic murmurs include regurgitant murmurs, such as the decrescendo murmur of aortic regurgitation, and filling murmurs, such as the presystolic rumble of mitral stenosis, which is preceded by an opening snap. The murmur associated with patent ductus arteriosus is continuous.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)425-432
Number of pages8
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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