Arrhythmogenic right ventricular dysplasia (ARVD) is a heritable cardiomyopathy characterized by the fibrofatty replacement of right ventricular (RV) myocardium leading to RV failure and arrhythmias. This study evaluated the potential utility of tissue Doppler echocardiography (TDE) and strain echocardiography (SE) to quantitatively assess RV function and their potential role in diagnosing ARVD. Images of 30 patients with ARVD (diagnosed by task force criteria) and 36 healthy controls were obtained. Peak systolic velocity, early diastolic velocity, displacement, strain rate, strain, outflow tract diameter, and fractional RV area change were measured in all subjects. Peak RV systolic velocity (6.4 +/- 2.2 vs 9 +/- 1.6 cm/s, p <0.0001), early diastolic velocity (-6.7 +/- 2.7 vs -9.4 +/- 2 cm/s, p <0.0001), displacement (13.7 +/- 5.8 vs 18.7 +/- 3.5 mm, p <0.0003), strain rate (-1 +/- 0.7 vs -2 +/- 1 s(-1), p = 0.002), and strain (-10 +/- 6% vs -28 +/- 11%, p = 0.001) were significantly lower in patients with ARVD compared with controls, respectively. Sensitivity and specificity, respectively, were 67% and 89% for systolic velocity, 77% and 71% for displacement, 73% and 87% for strain, 50% and 96% for strain rate, 53% and 93% for outflow tract diameter, and 47% and 83% for fractional area change. RV systolic velocity and displacement were significantly lower than in controls, even in the subset of patients with ARVD with apparently normal right ventricles by conventional echocardiography. Inter- and intraobserver agreement was high. In conclusion, TDE and SE enable the detection of ARVD via the quantification of RV function and may have potential clinical value in the assessment of patients with suspected ARVD. Peak RV systolic velocity <7.5 cm/s and peak RV strain <18% best identify patients with ARVD.