Abstract 5762: Evaluation of Coronary Artery Plaque Tissue Characterization by Cardiac Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Background: In carotid artery, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is able to depict the plaque tissue characteristics and the surface status of plaque. In this study, we made a detailed assessment of this technique for coronary artery and compared the findings of intravascular ultrasound (IVUS).
Method: We underwent three dimensional black blood (3DBB) cardiac MRI for 38 patients with established coronary artery disease (mean age =70 yrs, male=86%) and 42 coronary artery walls (RCA=17) were successfully visualized and assessed.
Results: We divided coronary artery wall into 4 imaging types by the intensity of MRI signal (SNR: signal of vessel wall divided by signal of blood). We named group N (n=8) as invisible type with SNR 1.3 ± 0.5, group D (n=11) as diffuse modest type with SNR 7.5 ± 2.0, group S (n=18) as spotted intense type with SNR 10.4±2.2 and group E (n=5) as equivocal type with SNR3.0 ± 0.8. IVUS demonstrated intense calcified plaque lesions in group N. Group D had the largest plaque volume among 4 groups. In S group, attenuated soft plaque was detected on IVUS imaging in the sites where spotted high SNR had been found on MRI.
Conclusion: The characterization of coronary artery plaque tissue can be made by plain MRI using navigator gated 3D BB sequence same as carotid artery. Spotted high MRI signal intensity may be indicative of plaque inflammation and/or hemorrhage. Therefore, coronary plaque vulnerability could be predicted by cardiac MRI.