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J Am Soc Echocardiogr. 2005 Sep;18(9):949-55.

Physiologic assessment of coronary artery stenosis without stress tests: noninvasive analysis of phasic flow characteristics by transthoracic Doppler echocardiography.

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Department of Cardiovascular Science and Medicine, Chiba University, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba, Japan.


We evaluated the significance of the diastolic-to-systolic blood flow velocity ratio (DSVR) determined by transthoracic Doppler echocardiography, for a physiologic assessment of the severity of coronary stenosis without stress tests, as compared with thallium 201 single photon emission computed tomography. In 95 patients undergoing thallium 201 single photon emission computed tomography for coronary artery disease, the flow velocity in the distal left anterior descending coronary artery was obtained with transthoracic Doppler echocardiography. The mean and peak DSVR values were calculated using mean and peak coronary flow velocity. DSVR was successfully measured for 82 patients (86.3%), including 33 patients with reversible perfusion defects in the left anterior descending coronary artery territories. For predicting reversible perfusion defects in thallium 201 single photon emission computed tomography, the best cut-off points were 1.5 for mean DSVR (sensitivity 81.8%, specificity 85.7%) and 1.6 for peak DSVR (sensitivity 75.7%, specificity 83.6%). Noninvasive measurement of DSVR with transthoracic Doppler echocardiography provides physiologic estimation of the left anterior descending coronary artery stenosis severity at high success rate, without stress tests.

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