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Prog Cardiovasc Dis. 2001 Jan-Feb;43(4):275-9.

Stress radionuclide imaging versus stress echocardiography: a framework for comparisons.

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Department of Medicine, St Luke's-Roosevelt Hospital Center, New York, NY 10025, USA.


Comparisons of stress-imaging procedures require analyses based on their 2 principal applications: diagnostic and prognostic assessments. Besides comparing results reported in the literature--in which differences have been reported in the ability of stress nuclear versus stress echocardiographic imaging to predict a low risk of cardiac events-other factors often not reported may be important in discerning the relative efficacy of these tests. These include consideration of how these tests perform in specific, individualized patient scenarios; the effect of on-going technical advances on test usefulness; and evaluation of test worthiness according to such factors as cost-effectiveness and the magnitude of incremental test information that is provided. Furthermore, it is important to distinguish between a test's efficacy (ie, its intrinsic accuracy) and its effectiveness (ie, how it performs in the real world of clinical practice).

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