Author + information
- Received February 22, 1983
- Revision received August 16, 1983
- Accepted August 16, 1983
- Published online February 1, 1984.
- Mary D. Osbakken, MD, Phd1,*,a,
- Robert D. Okada, MD, FACC1,
- Charles A. Boucher, MD, FACC1,
- H. William Strauss, MD, FACC1 and
- Gerald M. Pohost, MD, FACC1,2
- ↵aAddress for reprints:Mary D. Osbakken, MD. Department of Medicine and Radiology, The Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, The Pennsylvania State University, P.O. Box 850, Hershey, Pennsylvania 17033.
Exercise thallium-201 perfusion scans and gated equilibrium blood pool scans were performed in 120 catheterized patients with a chest pain syndrome. Eighty-six patients had coronary artery disease and 34 patients did not. The effects of gender, propranolol, exercise level, exercise ischemia, history of typical angina, history of previous myocardial infarction, electrocardiographic Q waves, number of diseased vessels and extent of coronary artery obstruction on diagnostic accuracy were evaluated. The overall sensitivity and specificity of thallium scans were 76 and 68%, respectively, and those of gated blood pool scans 80 and 62% (p = not significant). Propranolol decreased the specificity of thallium scans (propranolol = 42%; no propranolol = 87%, p < 0.05). Thallium scans and anginal history were less sensitive for detecting coronary disease in women (men: thallium = 79%; angina = 77%; women: 54 and 46%, respectively; p < 0.05). Exercise level did not significantly affect the diagnostic accuracy of either scan.
Thallium and gated scans were both highly sensitive (95%) in detecting disease in 20 patients with a prior myocardial infarction, angina and a positive electrocardiogram. The sensitivity of the thallium scan signifi- cantly decreased as the number of diseased vessels decreased. Both thallium and gated scans were less frequently positive in patients with atypical angina or no Q waves, but were not significantly influenced by electrocardiographic ischemia. The sensitivity and specificity of both scans were low in 57 patients with the combination of atypical angina, no history of infarction and equivocal stress electrocardiogram (thallium = 61 and 63%, respectively; gated = 61 and 67%).
When stress thallium scan evaluation included the electrocardiogram and thallium scan interpretation, the diagnostic accuracy was 81%. When all the information from gated scans (wall motion, ejection fraction, pulmonary blood volume) was combined for final gated scan evaluation, the diagnostic accuracy was 83%. When electrocardiographic data were added to all three gated scan variables, diagnostic accuracy was 77%.
In conclusion, thallium perfusion and gated blood pool scans have reasonable diagnostic accuracy for coronary artery disease in a group of patients with a moderately high prevalence of disease. However, combined variables from each test are needed to provide reliable diagnostic accuracy.
- Received February 22, 1983.
- Revision received August 16, 1983.
- Accepted August 16, 1983.
- American College of Cardiology Foundation