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Cardiac investigations: Nuclear, MRI, and CT 

Cardiac investigations: Nuclear, MRI, and CT
Cardiac investigations: Nuclear, MRI, and CT

Nikant Sabharwal

, Andrew Kelion

, Theodoros Karamitos

, and Stefan Neubauer

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date: 25 February 2021

Myocardial perfusion scintigraphy provides physiological information about the coronary circulation, in contrast to the anatomical information provided by angiography.

Three radionuclide-labelled perfusion tracers are routinely used in single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) imaging: thallium-201 and the technetium-99m-labelled complexes sestamibi and tetrofosmin. Imaging is performed following tracer injection during stress (exercise or pharmacological) and at rest; comparison allows determination of whether regional perfusion is normal, or if there is inducible hypoperfusion or infarction/scar. Myocardial perfusion imaging is minimally invasive, and—in contrast to other methods of investigation—can be performed regardless of overall exercise capacity, abnormalities of the resting electrocardiogram, pacemakers, obesity, claustrophobia, renal dysfunction, iodine allergy, or acoustic windows.

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