Insights into coronary artery disease gained from metabolic imaging.
Positron emission tomography offers the possibility of evaluating and quantifying regional myocardial blood flow and metabolism. Used in patients with coronary artery disease, positron emission tomography has demonstrated sustained metabolic activity in regions with reduced blood flow and impaired contractile function, and it thereby enables differentiation between viable myocardium and myocardium that has succumbed to necrosis and scar formation. Viable myocardial regions identified by metabolic rather than functional or blood-flow criteria are frequently observed in patients after an acute coronary event and in patients with stable coronary artery disease. Positron emission tomography reflects either acute myocardial ischemia, "hibernation," as well as "myocardial stunning." Findings from metabolic imaging have proved useful in characterizing more accurately coronary artery disease and its functional consequences. These findings have been found equally useful for clinical management.
- Copyright © 1988 by American Heart Association