Background Despite recent therapeutic advances, patients with heart failure caused by dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) still have high morbidity and mortality rates. In this study, we sought to assess the prognostic value of echocardiographic variables in patients with DCM and to assess the impact of a restrictive left ventricle filling pattern. Design We conducted a retrospective cohort study of 337 patients with DCM, using the Royal Brompton Hospital Echocardiography database for the years 1994 to 1998. Methods and Results There were 337 patients with a mean age of 53 ± 15 years. One hundred ninety-five patients (58%) had a restrictive left ventricle filling pattern (RFP). There was a total of 74 deaths (22%) during the follow-up period (43 ± 25 months). RFP more than tripled the risk of death (adjusted hazard ratio 3.2, 95% CI 1.8-5.7, P =.003). RFP is correlated with isovolumic relaxation time, incoordinate wall-motion, amplitude of right ventricular long axis excursion on M-mode echocardiography, and mitral regurgitation. Conclusion RFP is a powerful independent predictor of mortality in patients with nonischemic DCM. The risk associated with RFP is greatest among patients who had short isovolumic relaxation time, mitral regurgitation, incoordinate wall-motion, and depressed amplitude of right ventricular long axis excursion. Thus, echocardiography-derived variables may stratify patients with heart failure with DCM who are at high risk, for whom aggressive medical treatment or heart transplantation should be considered early.