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 - fat man

A high-efficiency SPECT system provided high quality and diagnostically accurate images for detecting coronary artery disease in obese patients, even morbidly obese patients, researchers reported in the April issue of the Journal of Nuclear Cardiology.

 - MRI

Echocardiography may be cost-effective and widely available, but a comparison of echo and MRI found only a modest accord in assessing mitral regurgitation. And between them, MRI had greater accuracy in evaluating regurgitation volume.

 - Balance

Coronary CT angiography (CTA) and functional testing came out on more or less equal footing for diagnosing coronary artery disease (CAD) in symptomatic patients, according to results from the PROMISE trial presented March 14 at the American College of Cardiology scientific session. But CTA pulled ahead in other ways.

 - ACR Appropriateness Criteria for palpable breast masses released

Appropriate use criteria (AUC) can be useful for decision-making, but is it a hard and fast answer? A prospective study found approximately one-third of patients diagnosed with blocked arteries would have been deemed inappropriate for angiography with 2012 AUCs.

 - heart, cardiology, cardiac

Noninvasive anatomic imaging appears to be superior in detecting significant coronary artery disease over functional testing, maybe. A study suggests that CT angiography is more accurate, but it may have been missing key data.


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FDA issues Class 1 recall for 13,000 MRI systems

The FDA placed a Class 1 recall on some MRI systems from GE Healthcare. The recall, which was spurred by employee errors rather than equipment failures, affects almost 13,000 devices.

CT-based calcium score may provide long-term outlook on CAD risk

Researchers evaluating the relative value of long-term forecasts for risk among low-risk patients without coronary artery disease (CAD) found that coronary artery calcium scores derived from CT scans may hold the biggest prediction bang.

Deferred revascularization safe with FFR guidance

On the fence about deferring revascularization? A meta-analysis found similar rates of clinical outcomes when decisions for deferred revascularization in unprotected left main coronary artery stenosis were guided by fractional flow reserve (FFR).

FEVAR pitch: 3D CT cuts radiation exposure

The complexity of fenestrated endovascular aortic repair (FEVAR) makes it a radiation hog, but it may not have to be that way. Using advanced imaging technology, one facility reduced FEVAR’s radiation exposure, contrast usage and procedure time significantly.

Connecting the dots: Brain lesions after CAS may show stroke risk

Brain lesions that appear on diffusion-weighted imaging after carotid artery stenting (CAS) may be a sign of stroke to come. A study in the Feb. 17 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology found patients with lesions on post-intervention magnetic resonance imaging were more than twice as likely to have a stroke or transit ischemic attack in the five years that followed.

ACC examines impact of Medicare changes on imaging

Medicare’s push to link payment for advanced diagnostic imaging to appropriate use criteria and the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission’s site-neutral payment recommendation topped the agenda at the American College of Cardiology’s (ACC) most recent legislative conference.

Demo takes CMR’s pulse as sleuth for microvascular disease

Quantitative cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR) imaging can assess variations in myocardial blood flow throughout the cardiac cycle, making it a potential tool for spotting microvascular diseases.

Acute care echocardiography guidelines offer clarifying insights

Echocardiography recommendations from two professional associations offered a better picture on how cardiologists in the emergency department should and shouldn’t use the technique. The guidelines were published in the February issue of the European Heart Journal.

CMR helps hone treatment for recurrent pericarditis

Cardiac MR (CMR) can help guide therapy in patients with recurrent pericarditis. One center reported patients who underwent imaging received a smaller total dose of steroids and experienced fewer recurrences than patients who did not get scans.

Some patients show signs of potential DNA damage after SPECT

Some patients may have greater risk of DNA damage due to radiation exposure from SPECT myocardial perfusion imaging, even though the radiation dose is low, according to a study published Jan. 21 in Circulation: Cardiovascular Imaging.

Brief, high-dose statin reduces contrast-induced kidney injuries

Use of short-term, high-dose atorvastatin may help patients avoid contrast-induced kidney injury, according to a meta-analysis published in the February issue of The Journal of Clinical Pharmacology.

Ultrasound may fill void when traditional tools don’t suffice

An automated ultrasound device for imaging peripheral arteries may provide a way to identify people with subclinical atherosclerotic plaque in populations not well served by risk-factor tools, according to a study published Jan. 12 in Global Heart.

Plaque features by CCTA may give clues on ischemia

Coronary CT angiography (CCTA) may shed some light on lesions that cause ischemia, based on a study that compared atherosclerotic plaque characteristics by CCTA with lesion-specific ischemia by fractional flow reserve.

Failing the stress test: Nuclear imaging AUC trip up some raters

As currently written, appropriate use criteria (AUC) for cardiac nuclear stress tests may not be as clear they need to be, according to a study published online Jan. 6 in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.

For transfemoral TAVR, contrast CT helps cut risk of vascular complications

Imaging with contrast CT instead of angiography to assess vessel diameter may lead to fewer transfemoral approach sheath-related complications during transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR), a study published in the January issue of Circulation: Cardiovascular Imaging found.

CT fails to topple diffusion-weighted imaging for use in stroke

Proving newer isn’t necessarily better, diffusion-weighted imaging holds out over CT perfusion in determining lesion volume in ischemic stroke patients. The findings were published online Dec. 30 in Stroke.

Report: Infraredx pursues $55M IPO

Infraredx, whose intravascular near infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) technology showed promise in a recent study, has filed for an initial public offering (IPO), according to Renaissance Capital.

Philips buys Volcano’s IVUS, FFR assets for $1B

Royal Philips will pay $1 billion to acquire the catheter-based imaging company Volcano Corp. The deal is scheduled to close in the first quarter of 2015.

Asymptomatic, moderate regurgitation may not warrant annual echo exam

Frequent echocardiography may not be needed for patients with asymptomatic, moderate aortic or mitral regurgitation, according to a study published online Dec. 10 in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology: Cardiovascular Imaging.

CT angiography helps screen asymptomatic patients

Coronary CT angiography (CCTA) may be justified in asymptomatic patients with a high risk of coronary artery disease (CAD) and might even oust coronary calcium scoring as the best option for screening these patients.