Computer quantitation of myocardial perfusion images has enhanced the detection of thallium perfusion abnormalities compared to visual analysis. Computer analysis is more specific than visual analysis for detection of initial defects and more sensitive for detection of redistribution. Computer analysis is equally good for detecting thallium abnormalities in the distribution of the three major coronary arteries. Measurement of absolute clearance of thallium results in an unacceptable high false-positive rate. However, when clearance in a myocardial segment is compared to the fastest clearing segment in the heart, the specificity of clearance improves significantly. Quantitation of lung:heart ratio is very useful. Increased lung:heart ratio reflects exercise induced left ventricular dysfunction and is a strong marker of prognosis. Single photon emission computerized tomography (SPECT) offers the potential of more precisely sizing the risk area. The question of whether this technique offers a significant advantage over planar thallium imaging has to be answered.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging