Technetium-99m stannous pyrophosphate imaging of experimental infective endocarditis.
Technetium-99m stannous pyrophosphate (99mTc-PYP) cardiac scintigraphy was performed in 15 rabbits with experimental Streptococcus sanguis aortic valve infective endocarditis. The animals were imaged five to seven days after the administration of bacteria, and in each case abnormal accumulation of the tracer was visualized in the region of the aortic valve. Three types of cardiac scintigraphic patterns were demonstrated: focal, multifocal and extensive, each correlating well with the anatomical extent of the lesion as defined by gross pathology. Tissue distribution studies demonstrated a 30 +/- 5.3 (mean +/- SEM) fold excess of radionuclide uptake in the infective endocarditis lesion compared with that of normal myocardium. Imaging of excised hearts from four animals showed an excellent correlation with in vivo imaging as well as gross pathology. Five animals with nonbacterial thrombotic aortic valve endocarditis demonstrated similar scintigraphic and tissue distribution results. In contrast, four normal animals failed to demonstrate abnormal 99mTc-PYP cardiac scintigrams or tissue uptake. This study demonstrates that 99mTc-PYP cardiac scintigraphy is a sensitive technique to detect experimental aortic valve endocarditis.
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