JOURNAL ARTICLE

Major adverse cardiac events and the severity of coronary atherosclerosis assessed by computed tomography coronary angiography in an outpatient population with suspected or known coronary artery disease

Annachiara Aldrovandi, Erica Maffei, Sara Seitun, Chiara Martini, Elena Berti, Roberto Grilli, Giancarlo Messalli, Annick C Weustink, Nico R Mollet, Koen Nieman, Diego Ardissino, Pim J de Feyter, Gabriel P Krestin, Filippo Cademartiri
Journal of Thoracic Imaging 2012, 27 (1): 23-8
21052023

PURPOSE: To investigate the predictive value of 64-slice computed tomography coronary angiography (CTCA) for major adverse cardiac events (MACEs) in patients with suspected or known coronary artery disease (CAD).

MATERIALS AND METHODS: Seven hundred and sixty-seven consecutive patients (496 men, age 62±11 y) with suspected or known heart disease referred to an outpatient clinic underwent 64-slice CTCA. The patients were followed for the occurrence of MACE (ie, cardiac death, nonfatal myocardial infarction, unstable angina).

RESULTS: Eleven thousand five hundred and sixty-four coronary segments were assessed. Of these, 178 (1.5%) were not assessable because of insufficient image quality. Overall, CTCA revealed the absence of CAD in 219 (28.5%) patients, nonobstructive CAD (coronary plaque ≤50%) in 282 (36.8%) patients, and obstructive CAD in 266 (34.7%) patients. A total of 21 major cardiac events (4 cardiac deaths, 12 myocardial infarctions, and 5 unstable angina) occurred during a mean follow-up of 20 months. One noncardiac death occurred. Seventeen events occurred in the group of patients with obstructive CAD, and 4 events occurred in the group with nonobstructive CAD. The event rate was 0% among patients with normal coronary arteries at CTCA. In multivariate analysis, the presence of obstructive CAD and diabetes were the only independent predictors of MACE.

CONCLUSIONS: Coronary plaque evaluation by CTCA provides an independent prognostic value for the prediction of MACE. Patients with normal CTCA findings have an excellent prognosis at follow-up.

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