Detection of Calcified and Noncalcified Coronary Atherosclerotic Plaque by Contrast-Enhanced, Submillimeter Multidetector Spiral Computed Tomography: A Segment-Based Comparison with Intravascular Ultrasound

Stephan Achenbach, Fabian Moselewski, Dieter Ropers, Maros Ferencik, Udo Hoffmann, Briain MacNeill, Karsten Pohle, Ulrich Baum, Katharina Anders, Ik Kyung Jang, Werner G. Daniel, Thomas J. Brady

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    684 Scopus citations

    Abstract

    Background-We investigated the ability of multidetector spiral computed tomography (MDCT) to detect atherosclerotic plaque in nonstenotic coronary arteries. Methods and Results-In 22 patients without significant coronary stenoses, contrast-enhanced MDCT (0.75-mm collimation, 420-ms rotation) and intravascular ultrasound (IVUS) of one coronary artery were performed. A total of 83 coronary segments were imaged by IVUS (left main, 19; left anterior descending, 51; left circumflex, 4; right coronary, 9). MDCT data sets were evaluated for the presence and volume of plaque in the coronary artery segments. Results were compared with IVUS in a blinded fashion. For the detection of segments with any plaque, MDCT had a sensitivity of 82% (41 of 50) and specificity of 88% (29 of 33). For calcified plaque, sensitivity was 94% (33 of 36) and specificity 94% (45 of 47). Coronary segments containing noncalcified plaque were detected with a sensitivity of 78% (35 of 45) and specificity of 87% (33 of 38), but presence of exclusively noncalcified plaque was detected with only 53% sensitivity (8 of 15). If analysis was limited to the 41 proximal segments (segments 1, 5, 6, and 11 according to American Heart Association classification), sensitivity and specificity were 92% and 88% for any plaque, 95% and 91% for calcified plaque, and 91% and 89% for noncalcified plaque. MDCT substantially underestimated plaque volume per segment as compared with IVUS (24±35 mm3 versus 43±60 mm3, P<0.001). Conclusions-The results indicate the potential of MDCT to detect coronary atherosclerotic plaque in patients without significant coronary stenoses. However, further improvements in image quality will be necessary to achieve reliable assessment, especially of noncalcified plaque throughout the coronary tree.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)14-17
    Number of pages4
    JournalCirculation
    Volume109
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    StatePublished - Jan 6 2004

    Keywords

    • Atherosclerosis
    • Coronary disease
    • Tomography

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
    • Physiology (medical)

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