Myocardial contrast echocardiography (MCE) is a technique that uses microbubbles as a tracer during simultaneous ultrasound of the heart. The microbubbles can be used to provide quantitative information regarding the adequacy of myocardial blood flow (MBF), as well as the spatial extent of microvascular integrity. In acute myocardial infarction, MCE can identify the presence of collateral flow within the risk area, and can therefore predict preservation of myocardial viability and ultimate infarct size even prior to reperfusion. After reperfusion, the extent of microvascular noreflow can be determined, and has significant implications for recovery of left ventricular function. In chronic ischemic heart disease, MCE has also been shown to successfully differentiate viable from necrotic myocardium. This technique can accurately predict recovery of function after revascularization. More importantly, MCE can be used to identify viable segments that may help to prevent infarct expansion and remodeling, and thus improve patient outcomes.
- Contrast agents
- Myocardial viability
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine