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Proceedings Paper

Differentiation of constrictive pericarditis from restrictive cardiomyopathy: the case for high-resolution dynamic tomographic imaging
Author(s): Robert M. Weiss M.D.; Eramosele A. Otoadese; Ron M. Oren
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Paper Abstract

The syndrome of constrictive pericarditis (CP) presents a diagnostic challenge to the clinician. This study was undertaken to determine whether cine computed tomography (CT), a cardiac imaging technique with excellent temporal and spatial resolution, can reliably demonstrate the unique abnormalities of pericardial anatomy and ventricular physiology present in patients with this condition. A second goal of this study was to determine whether the presence of diseased thickened pericardium, by itself, imparts cardiac impairment due to abnormalities of ventricular diastolic function. Methods: Twelve patients with CP suspected clinically, in whom invasive hemodynamic study was consistent with the diagnosis of CP, underwent cine CT. They were subdivided into Group 1 (CP, N equals 5) and Group 2 (No CP, N equals 7) based on histopathologic evaluation of tissue obtained at the time of surgery or autopsy. A third group consisted of asymptomatic patients with incidentally discovered thickened pericardium at the time of cine CT scanning: Group 3 (ThP, N equals 7). Group 4 (Nl, N equals 7) consisted of healthy volunteer subjects. Results: Pericardial thickness measurements with cine CT clearly distinguished Group 1 (mean equals 10 +/- 2 mm) from Group 2 (mean equals 2 +/- 1 mm), with diagnostic accuracy of 100% compared to histopathological findings. In addition, patients in Group 1 had significantly more brisk early diastolic filling of both left and right ventricles than those in Group 2, which clearly distinguished all patients with, from all patients without CP. Patients in Group 3 had pericardial thicknesses similar to those in Group 1 (mean equals 9 +/- 1 mm, p equals NS), but had patterns of diastolic ventricular filling that were nearly identical to Group 4 (Nl). Conclusions: The abnormalities of anatomy and ventricular function present in the syndrome of constrictive pericarditis are clearly and decisively identified by cine CT. This allows a reliable distinction between patients with constrictive pericarditis and those with cardiomyopathy. The presence of diseased thickened pericardium does not by itself impart impairment of ventricular diastolic function. Thus, definitive diagnosis of constrictive pericarditis requires demonstration of both abnormal anatomy and physiology.

Paper Details

Date Published: 24 May 1995
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 2433, Medical Imaging 1995: Physiology and Function from Multidimensional Images, (24 May 1995); doi: 10.1117/12.209707
Show Author Affiliations
Robert M. Weiss M.D., Univ. of Iowa College of Medicine (United States)
Eramosele A. Otoadese, Univ. of Iowa College of Medicine (United States)
Ron M. Oren, Univ. of Iowa College of Medicine (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 2433:
Medical Imaging 1995: Physiology and Function from Multidimensional Images
Eric A. Hoffman, Editor(s)

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