Electron-beam computed tomography (EBCT) is more accurate than conventional catheter angiography for detecting a dangerous congenital heart abnormality that could cause sudden death, according to research by a Saint Louis University radiologist published last month in Catheterization and Cardiovascular Interventions: Journal of the Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions.
Esat Memisoglu, M.D., assistant professor of radiology at Saint Louis University School of Medicine, and his team – which included another radiologist and several cardiologists – studied 28 adults at a heart hospital and imaging center in Istanbul, Turkey, who had undergone conventional X-ray angiography for chest pain or shortness of breath and then later underwent an EBCT.
In half of the patients, angiography showed a congenital abnormality – for example, a left coronary artery originating from the right side of the aorta, or vice versa. EBCT also detected the abnormalities, but in more than a third of the cases, it was able to provide information the angiography could not. Specifically, it could confidently determine whether the artery traveled perilously between the aorta and pulmonary artery, putting that patient at risk for a heart attack or sudden death, Memisoglu says.
Rachel Otto | EurekAlert!
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