Molecular imaging can identify high-risk patients with life-threatening cardiovascular conditions and help physicians determine which patients are best suited for implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) therapy, according to a study conducted by researchers at Sapporo University, Sapporo, Japan.
According to researchers molecular imaging can play an important role in diagnosing and guiding the treatment strategy for arrhythmia, coronary artery disease and heart failure.
The researchers investigated prognostic implications of cardiac pre-synaptic sympathetic function quantified by cardiac MIBG activity and myocyte damage or viability quantified by cardiac tetrofosmin activity in patients treated with prophylactic use of ICD, by correlating with lethal arrhythmic events which would have been documented during a prospective follow-up.
Based on these aspects, the study is the first to show the efficacies of the method for more accurate identification of patients at greater risk of lethal arrhythmias and sudden cardiac death (SCD).
Muroram City General Hospital physician in the cardiology division Kimio Nishisato said that if the molecular imaging techniques are used for appropriate selection of ICD candidates, not only overuse but also underuse of ICD could be avoided and the assessment may be shown to be more cost-effective.