Evaluation of myocardial blood flow and metabolism using positron emission tomography

M. Schwaiger, G. D. Hutchins, H. Guibourg, D. E. Kuhl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Positron emission tomography (PET) allows the noninvasive assessment of myocardial blood flow and metabolism. PET flow studies using 82rubidium or 13N ammonia in combination with exercise or dipyridamole infusion can detect coronary artery disease with a high degree of accuracy. PET assessment of coronary reserve provides quantification of the functional significance of coronary artery stenoses in humans, which improves both the diagnostic and the prognostic evaluations of these patients. Myocardial substrate metabolism, which is markedly altered toward increased glucose use during ischemia, can be assessed by PET and the glucose analog 18F-deoxyglucose (FDG). When combined, these PET evaluations of myocardial flow and glucose metabolism provide a sensitive, noninvasive method of detecting viable but compromised myocardium. In patients with advanced coronary artery disease, regional glucose metabolism assessed by PET measurements of FDG uptake identifies salvageable myocardium and predicts tissue recovery following revascularization. As a unique clinical tool for defining regional tissue viability, PET will play an important role in selecting patients for coronary revascularization.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)266-275
Number of pages10
JournalAmerican Journal of Cardiac Imaging
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1 1989
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

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