Author + information
- Received July 21, 1989
- Revision received January 18, 1991
- Accepted November 13, 1991
- Published online May 1, 1992.
- Thomas H. Loecker, MDa,
- Robert S. Schwartz, MD, FACC∗∗,
- Charles W. Cotta, MDa and
- James R. Hickman Jr., MD, Col, FACCa
- ↵∗Address for reprints: Robert S. Schwartz, MD, Division of Cardiovascular Diseases, Mayo Graduate School of Medicine, Rochester, Minnesota 55905.
Little is known about the diagnostic significance of coronary artery calcification detected fluoroscopically in apparently healthy young men. This study compared the presence of fluoroscopically detected coronary artery calcification with angiographic coronary artery disease in asymptomatic male military aircrew undergoing noninvasive cardiac screening tests and coronary arteriography for occupational indications. Of 1,466 men screened with coronary fluoroscopy, 613 underwent coronary arteriography because of one or more abnormal noninvasive test results. The mean age (±SD) of all subjects screened was 40.2 ± 5 years (range 26 to 65).
Significant coronary artery disease (≥50% diameter stenosis) was found in 104 of the 613 subjects with arteriograms (16.9% disease prevalence). Overall sensitivity and specificity for coronary artery calcification detection of significant disease, based only on those subjects undergoing arteriography, were 66.3% and 77.6%, respectively. For measurable disease (mild plus significant), sensitivity was 60.6% and specificity 85.9%. Positive and negative predictive values were 37.7% and 91.9%, respectively, for significant disease. For measurable disease, positive and negative predictive values were 68.9% and 80.9%, respectively.
In these asymptomatic young men, a fluoroscopic examination negative for coronary artery calcification indicated a low risk of significant coronary artery disease, whereas a positive test result (calcification present) substantially increased the likelihood of angiographically significant coronary artery disease.
- Received July 21, 1989.
- Revision received January 18, 1991.
- Accepted November 13, 1991.