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Metabolic PET imaging provides earlier warning of coronary disease
Date:6/11/2013

Vancouver, British Columbia Coronary artery disease (CAD) is one of the world's most prevalent and silent killers. Positron emission tomography (PET), which images miniscule abnormalities in cellular metabolism, can tip off clinicians about cardiac disasters waiting to happen including sudden death from a heart attackbetter than standard angiography, researchers revealed at the Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging's 2013 Annual Meeting.

"Using FDG PET we can easily detect changes that occur in the heart at the microscopic levelmuch sooner than when changes become evident in angiography, at the macroscopic level," said Arun Sasikumar, MD, MBBS, lead researcher from the department of nuclear medicine at the Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER) based in Chandigarh, India. "By detecting the detrimental changes in the heart at an early stage, physicians can prescribe medications that can halt disease progression, thus preventing a devastating cardiac event such as heart attack or sudden cardiac death."

There are several ways to detect CAD, including the use of angiography, which utilizes X-ray energy and contrast dye flushed through major arteries to reveal structural detail about the state of blood vessels, including instances of narrowing and reduced blood flow that develop from plaque build-up and scarring associated with atherosclerosis. Another major method is stress myocardial perfusion imaging (MPI), a molecular imaging technique that provides vital information about heart muscle viability. MPI stress tests tell clinicians about blood flow and aspects of heart function at different levels of stress by bringing patients up to a targeted percentage of their maximum heart rate using either exercise stress or pharmaceutical stress, which provokes effects on the heart similar to those of exercise. A third method is the use of the agent F-18 fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG), which is detected by PET. Injected FD
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Contact: Susan Martonik
smartonik@snmmi.org
703-652-6773
Society of Nuclear Medicine
Source:Eurekalert

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