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Integrating noninvasive absolute flow, coronary flow reserve, and ischemic thresholds into a comprehensive map of physiological severity.


Johnson NPNils P , Gould KL K Lance . JACC. Cardiovascular imaging. 2012 4 ; 5(4). 430-40


Noninvasive, absolute myocardial perfusion and coronary flow reserve (CFR) can be imaged by many techniques. However, such data must be interpreted for clinical application regardless of its source. Currently, no guide exists for physiological integration. Therefore, we propose 2-dimensional scatter plots of stress flow and CFR with superimposed thresholds for normal flow, reduced flow without ischemia, definite ischemia, and transmural infarction to allow for automatic and objective classification. Application of this schema to 1,500 studies demonstrates that flow capacity relates inversely to risk factors and atherosclerotic burden. Interpreting stress flow to make clinical decisions requires rest flow or CFR for broad application to all patients. Although relative uptake images alone are adequate for some patients, it can either under- or over-estimate flow capacity in many persons. Our standardized framework could prompt future studies leading to a trial of revascularization guided by absolute flow measurements.