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J Am Coll Cardiol. 2011 Jun 14;57(24):2426-36. doi: 10.1016/j.jacc.2010.12.043.

Meta-analysis and systematic review of the long-term predictive value of assessment of coronary atherosclerosis by contrast-enhanced coronary computed tomography angiography.

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Department of Clinical Radiology, Ludwig-Maximilians University, Klinikum Grosshadern, Munich, Germany.



We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis to determine the predictive value of findings of coronary computed tomography angiography for incident cardiovascular events.


Initial studies indicate a prognostic value of the technique; however, the level of evidence as well as exact independent risk estimates remain unclear.


We searched PubMed, EMBASE, and the Cochrane Library through January 2010 for studies that followed up ≥ 100 subjects for ≥ 1 year and reported at ≥ 1 hazard ratio (HR) of interest. Risk estimates for the presence of significant coronary stenosis (primary endpoint; ≥ 50% diameter stenosis), left main coronary artery stenosis, each coronary stenosis, 3-vessel disease, any plaque, per coronary segment containing plaque, and noncalcified plaque were derived in random effect regression analysis, and causes of heterogeneity were determined in meta-regression analysis.


We identified 11 eligible articles including 7,335 participants (age 59.1 ± 2.6 years, 62.8% male) with suspected coronary artery disease. The presence of ≥ 1 significant coronary stenosis (9 studies, 3,670 participants, and 252 outcome events [6.8%] with 62% revascularizations) was associated with an annualized event rate of 11.9% (6.4% in studies excluding revascularization). The corresponding HR was 10.74 (98% confidence interval [CI]: 6.37 to 18.11) and 6.15 (95% CI: 3.22 to 11.74) in studies excluding revascularization. Adjustment for coronary calcification did not attenuate the prognostic significance (p = 0.79). The estimated HRs for left main stenosis, presence of plaque, and each coronary segment containing plaque were 6.64 (95% CI: 2.6 to 17.3), 4.51 (95% CI: 2.2 to 9.3), and 1.23 (95% CI: 1.17 to 1.29), respectively.


Presence and extent of coronary artery disease on coronary computed tomography angiography are strong, independent predictors of cardiovascular events despite heterogeneity in endpoints, categorization of computed tomography findings, and study population.

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