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Circulation. 1989 Dec;80(6):1595-602.

Noninvasive determination of coronary artery bypass graft patency by cine magnetic resonance imaging.

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  • 1Department of Medicine, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia 19104.


Cine magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a gradient-recalled, retrospectively gated, fast-scan technique that depicts laminar flowing blood as bright signal and has been proposed as a useful method for determination of coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) patency. Therefore, we performed a blinded prospective study to assess the value of cine MRI determination of CABG patency in 20 patients with 45 CABG proximal anastomoses who were undergoing repeat angiography. Ten normal subjects served as controls to define normal intrathoracic vascular patterns. There were 21 left anterior descending (LAD) grafts, of which four were left internal mammary (LIMA), 12 left circumflex (Cx), and 12 right coronary (RCA) grafts. After localizing spin-echo coronal images were obtained, multiple axial multislice interleaved cine MRI acquisitions, each consisting of two to four 5-10-mm-thick slices at eight to 24 frames per cardiac cycle, were obtained from the superior main pulmonary artery to the inferior left ventricle. Each acquisition took 5-8 minutes with a subsequent 5-10 minutes of computer image reconstruction. Total study time per patient was 50-75 minutes. Known to cine MRI interpreters were the original surgical CABG insertions but not the angiographic findings. A graft was called patent if a bright graft flow signal, not corresponding to a normal vessel, was identified on multiple frames at multiple levels abutting the great vessels or epicardial surface of the heart. Angiographically, there were 33 patent grafts, of which 29 were identified as patent by cine MRI (sensitivity, 88%).(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

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