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Am J Cardiol. 1984 Mar 1;53(6):764-9.

Thallium-201 scintigraphy in complete left bundle branch block.


Nineteen symptomatic patients with left bundle branch block (LBBB) were examined by thallium-201 (TI-201) exercise scintigraphy and selective coronary arteriography. All elicited significant anteroseptal perfusion defects in the exercise scintigrams, but in only 4 was coronary artery disease (CAD) involving the left anterior descending coronary artery present. To further elucidate the effect of LBBB on septal TI-201 uptake in the absence of CAD, TI-201 scintigrams combined with regional myocardial blood flow measurements using radioactive microspheres were carried out in 7 dogs during right atrial and right ventricular pacing (LBBB in the ECG) at similar heart rates. During right atrial pacing, TI-201 uptake was homogeneous in the entire left ventricle, as were tissue flows. During right ventricular pacing, TI-201 activity was reduced to 69% of maximal TI-201 activity within the septum, whereas it averaged 90% in the lateral wall (p less than 0.05) in 6 dogs. Correspondingly, regional myocardial blood flow was lower within the septum as compared with that in the lateral wall, averaging 89 and 120 ml/min/100 g, respectively (p less than 0.005). In 1 dog, normal TI-201 distribution and tissue flows were found in both studies. Thus, symptomatic patients with LBBB may elicit abnormal TI-201 exercise scintigrams, suggesting anteroseptal ischemia despite normal coronary arteries. The electrical induction of LBBB in dogs results, in most instances, in a comparable reduction in septal TI-201 uptake associated with diminished septal blood flow. Therefore, exercise-induced septal perfusion defects in the presence of LBBB do not necessarily indicate CAD even in symptomatic patients, but may reflect functional ischemia due to asynchronous septal contraction.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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