Differentiation between viable myocardium and scar tissue in segments with abnormal contraction has important consequences in the clinical management of patients with coronary artery disease. Positron emission tomography (PET) can identify viable tissue using 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG). However, application of PET for daily routine is limited. In this study, FDG uptake was visualized with single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) and compared with regional perfusion assessed with thallium-201 (201Tl) SPECT. The scintigraphic findings were related to regional regional wall motion determined with two-dimensional echocardiography. Patients (n = 9) with wall motion abnormalities underwent FDG SPECT and resting 201Tl SPECT. To control the metabolic status patients were studied with a hyperinsulinaemic euglycemic clamp during FDG SPECT. Analysis of reconstructed data was performed visually and semiquantitatively using circumferential profiles. High-quality images were obtained. Eight 201Tl defects showed concordantly decreased FDG uptake (metabolism-perfusion matches) indicating scarred tissue, whereas six regions of hypoperfusion demonstrated a relatively increased FDG uptake (mismatches), suggesting viable myocardium. Semiquantitative analysis confirmed visual findings. Mean 201Tl and FDG activities were not significantly different in matching defects. In mismatches the mean FDG activity was 81 ± 11% vs 64 ± 9% mean 201Tl activity (P<0.0001). In four of six segments with increased FDG uptake, two-dimensional echo revealed hypokinesia. Seven of eight regions with a matching defect in contrast were akinetic. Thus, in the areas with a mismatch contractility was preserved. We conclude that FDG uptake can be visualized with SPECT. Furthermore, our preliminary observations suggest that this approach can identify viable tissue.
- Myocardial infarction
- Single photon emission computed tomography
- Thallium-201 chloride
- Viable myocardium