Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New heart scan may speed up diagnosis with less radiation

Date:
August 24, 2011
Source:
American Heart Association
Summary:
The next generation of computerized tomography (CT) scans appears faster and more accurate than current scans for measuring blood supply to the heart muscle. A small trial found the new scan provided images of the entire heart quicker, making it more convenient and safer for patients.

New technology appears to provide faster, more accurate heart scans for both viewing blood vessels in the heart and measuring blood supply to the heart muscle, while exposing patients to less radiation, researchers report in Circulation: Cardiovascular Imaging, a journal of the American Heart Association.

In preliminary tests from a small trial of 39 patients, computerized tomography (CT) scans called 2nd generation 128 Slice Dual Source "Flash" CT captured quicker images of the entire heart, allowing doctors to better see artery blockages and reduced blood flow through the heart. This was accomplished using a tenth of the radiation of current CT scans, the standard test for diagnosing and pinpointing the location of heart disease.

The CT scan uses a high-pitch "Flash" CT scan technique, which enables an ultrafast scan time.

A contrast agent and vasodilatator is injected into the patient's blood vessels to help highlight certain areas.

"The new exam is faster and more convenient for the patient," said Gudrun M. Feuchtner, M.D., a study co-author.

The new technology captures images of the entire heart in less than 0.3 seconds -- within one heart beat -- as compared to 6 seconds and several heart beats for conventional CT scans.

For accuracy, the new scan was compared to cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and invasive angiogram, which involves snaking a catheter through an artery in the groin or arm to the heart. An angiogram, and sometimes MRI, requires contrast dye.

Compared to cardiac MRI, 78 percent to 95 percent of the time the new CT correctly identified restricted blood flow and correctly ruled it out 84 percent to 94 percent of the time.

Compared to invasive angiography, the new CT had 90 percent accuracy in detecting significant blockages. The new CT's accuracy improved to 95 percent when added to CT perfusion -- a scan taken after using contrast dye.

The scan proved particularly useful in patients with advanced heart disease or diabetic patients who reported no symptoms, but were found to have areas of poor coronary blood flow, Feuchtner said. Because people with diabetes may have nerve damage, they may not always experience the chest pains that typically accompany reduced blood flow to the heart.

"Those patients would not immediately seek a cardiologist, but would have a poor prognosis," said Feuchtner, a professor in the Department of Radiology at the Innsbruck Medical University in Innsbruck, Austria.

The study findings can also help to plan heart surgery more accurately, according to André Plass, a co-author and cardiac surgeon from University Hospital Zurich in Switzerland.

The new technology answers two questions with one scan: whether the blood vessels of the heart are narrowed and whether there is reduced blood flow.

"This can have important implications for cost savings and efficiency as two studies are done in one setting," said Ricardo C. Cury, M.D., co-author of the study and chairman of radiology at Baptist Health of South Florida.

Larger studies are needed before the new technology is widely used, researchers said.

Co-authors from University Hospital Zürich, where the study was performed, include: Robert Goetti, M.D.; André Plass, M.D.; Monika Wieser, M.D.; Hans Scheffel, M.D.; Christophe Wyss, M.D.; Paul Stolzmann, M.D.; Olivio Donati, M.D.; Johannes Schnabl, M.D.; Volkmar Falk, M.D.; Hatem Alkadhi, M.D., M.P.H.; Sebastian Leschka, M.D.; Ricardo C. Cury, M.D.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Heart Association. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Gudrun Feuchtner, Robert Goetti, André Plass, Monika Wieser, Hans Scheffel, Christophe Wyss, Paul Stolzmann, Olivio Donati, Johannes Schnabl, Volkmar Falk, Hatem Alkadhi, Sebastian Leschka, Ricardo C. Cury. Adenosine Stress High-pitch 128-slice Dual Source Myocardial Computed Tomography Perfusion For Imaging Of Reversible Myocardial Ischemia: Comparison with Magnetic Resonance Imaging. Circulation: Cardiovascular Imaging, 2011; DOI: 10.1161/CIRCIMAGING.110.961250

Cite This Page:

American Heart Association. "New heart scan may speed up diagnosis with less radiation." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 August 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110823165334.htm>.
American Heart Association. (2011, August 24). New heart scan may speed up diagnosis with less radiation. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110823165334.htm
American Heart Association. "New heart scan may speed up diagnosis with less radiation." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110823165334.htm (accessed September 17, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Artificial Sweetener Could Promote Diabetes

Artificial Sweetener Could Promote Diabetes

Newsy (Sep. 17, 2014) — Doctors once thought artificial sweeteners lacked the health risks of sugar, but a new study says they can impact blood sugar levels the same way. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Vaccine Trial Gets Underway at Oxford University

Ebola Vaccine Trial Gets Underway at Oxford University

AFP (Sep. 17, 2014) — A healthy British volunteer is to become the first person to receive a new vaccine for the Ebola virus after US President Barack Obama called for action against the epidemic and warned it was "spiralling out of control." Duration: 01:02 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obesity Rates Steady Even As Americans' Waistlines Expand

Obesity Rates Steady Even As Americans' Waistlines Expand

Newsy (Sep. 17, 2014) — Researchers are puzzled as to why obesity rates remain relatively stable as average waistlines continue to expand. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
President To Send 3,000 Military Personnel To Fight Ebola

President To Send 3,000 Military Personnel To Fight Ebola

Newsy (Sep. 16, 2014) — President Obama is expected to send 3,000 troops to West Africa as part of the effort to contain Ebola's spread. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins