• IMA sites
  • IMAJ services
  • IMA journals
  • Doctors card
  • Follow us
  • Alternate Text Alternate Text
עמוד בית
Tue, 06.06.23

Search results

November 2008
I. Greenberg-Wolff et al

Background: Cardiac computed tomography scans influde several extra-cardiac structures such as mediastinum, lung parenchyma and upper abdominal organs. A variety of abnormalities in those structures might be clinically important and in some cases might explain the patient's complaints.

Objectives: To analyze consecutive cardiac computed tomography examinations for the prevalence and clinical significance of extra-cardiac findings.

Methods: Cardiac CT scans of 134 sequential patients (104 males, 30 females) aged 20–77 years (mean 54 years) with suspected coronary artery disease were prospectively and independently reviewed by a consensus of two radiologists for the presence of lung, mediastinal, pleural, upper abdominal and skeletal abnormalities. CT scans with extra-cardiac abnormalities were divided into two groups: group A – defined as "clinically significant" or "potentially significant findings" – consisted of patients requiring further evaluation or follow-up, and group B – "clinically non-significant findings."

Results: Extra-cardiac abnormalities were found in 103 of the 134 patients (76.8%). Group A abnormalities were found in 52/134 patients (39%), while group B abnormalities were seen in 85/134 (63%). The most common abnormalities in group A were non-calcified lung nodules (> 4 mm) noted in 17/134 patients (13%), followed by enlarged mediastinal lymph nodes (> 10 mm) in 14/134 (10%), diaphragmatic hernia (2 cm) in 12/134 (9%), moderate or severe degenerative spine disease in 12/134 (9%), and emphysema and aortic aneurysm in 6 patients each (4.5%). A malignant lung tumor was noted in one patient.

Conclusions: There is a high prevalence of non-cardiac abnormalities in patients undergoing CCT[1]. Clinically significant or potentially significant findings can be expected in 40% of patients who undergo CCT, and these will require further evaluation and follow-up. The reporting radiologist should be experienced in chest imaging and aware of the large variety of non-cardiac findings in CCT that might explain the patient's complaints. 

[1] CCT = coronary computed tomography

April 2007
A. Eisen, A. Tenenbaum, N. Koren-Morag, D. Tanne, J. Shemesh, A. Golan, E. Z. Fisman, M. Motro, E. Schwammenthal and Y. Adler

Background: Coronary heart disease and ischemic stroke are among the leading causes of morbidity and mortality in adults, and cerebrovascular disease is associated with the presence of symptomatic and asymptomatic CHD[1]. Several studies noted an association between coronary calcification and thoracic aorta calcification by several imaging techniques, but this association has not yet been examined in stable angina pectoris patients with the use of spiral computed tomography.

Objectives: To examine by spiral CT the association between the presence and severity of CC[2] and thoracic aorta calcification in patients with stable angina pectoris.

Methods: The patients were enrolled in ACTION (A Coronary Disease Trial Investigating Outcome with Nifedipine GITS) in Israel. The 432 patients (371 men and 61 women aged 40–89 years) underwent chest CT and were evaluated for CC and aortic calcification.

Results: CC was documented in 90% of the patients (n=392) and aortic calcification in 70% (n=303). A significant association (P < 0.05) was found between severity of CC and severity of aortic calcification (as measured by area, volume and slices of calcification). We also found an association between the number of coronary vessels calcified and the presence of aortic calcification: 90% of patients with triple-vessel disease (n=157) were also positive for aortic calcification (P < 0.05). Age also had an effect: 87% of patients ≥ 65 years (n=219) were positive for both coronary and aortic calcification (P = 0.005) while only 57% ≤ 65 (n=209) were positive for both (P = 0.081).

Conclusions: Our study demonstrates a strong association between the presence and severity of CC and the presence and severity of calcification of thoracic aorta in patients with stable angina pectoris as detected by spiral CT.


[1] CHD = coronary heart disease

[2] CC = coronary calcification

January 2000
Alexander Tenenbaum MD PhD, Alexander Garniek MD, Joseph Shemesh MD, Chaim I. Stroh MD, Yacov Itzchak MD PhD, Zvi Vered MD, Michael Motro MD and Enrique Z. Fisman MD

Background: Protruding aortic atheromas are a potential source of stroke and systemic emboli. The single modality currently available for their detection has been transesophageal echocardiography. However, TEE does not allow full visualization of the upper part of the ascending aorta and proximal aortic arch.

Objectives: To investigate whether double helical computerized tomography- both with and without contrast injection - may represent a useful technique for noninvasive detection of PAA in stroke patients.

Methods: Forty consecutive patients ≥50 years of age who sustained a recent ischemic stroke and/or systemic emboli (within 15 days after the onset of the event) were enrolled in the study and underwent TEE and DHCT without contrast injection using thin slice acquisition (3.2 mm thickness and 1.5 mm reconstruction increment). In addition, the last eight consecutive patients, after obtaining an unenhanced scan, underwent a contrast-enhanced DHCT following peripheral intravenous injection of a small amount of contrast material (15 ml of diatrizoate).

Results: PAAs were demonstrated by TEE in 18 patients (45%); in 16 of them (89%) the atheromas were recognized by DHCT. Of the 22 patients without PAA on TEE, DHCT confirmed their absence in 18 (82%). DHCT yielded a sensitivity of 89%, a specificity of 82%, and an overall accuracy of 85%. The total number of protruding plaques detected by TEE was 43, of which 41 (95%) were correctly identified by DHCT. The mean thickness of the plaques was 5.6±2.4 mm on TEE, and 5.4±2.3 on DHCT (P=NS), with a good correlation between the modalities (γ=0.84). Contrast-enhanced DHCT scans demonstrated absolute equivalence to TEE in aortic areas defined as "clearly visualized by TEE." DHCT detected PAA between the distal ascending aorta and the proximal arch in seven patients; these atheromas were not included in the comparative analysis. In these "occult" areas, DHCT may be superior to TEE.

Conclusions: DHCT without contrast injection using thin slice acquisition may become a useful modality for rapid noninvasive detection of PAA. Contrast-enhanced DHCT scans significantly improve imaging quality and may be superior to TEE in the upper ascending aorta and the proximal arch (areas not well visualized by TEE).




TEE= transesophgeal echocardiography

PAA= protruding aortic atheroma

DHCT= dual helical computerized tomography

Legal Disclaimer: The information contained in this website is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as legal or medical advice on any matter.
The IMA is not responsible for and expressly disclaims liability for damages of any kind arising from the use of or reliance on information contained within the site.
© All rights to information on this site are reserved and are the property of the Israeli Medical Association. Privacy policy

2 Twin Towers, 35 Jabotinsky, POB 3566, Ramat Gan 5213604 Israel