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Usefulness of Computed Tomographic Coronary Angiography in Patients With Acute Chest Pain With and Without High-Risk Features

      The accuracy of 64-slice computed tomographic coronary angiography (CTA) and its ability to direct revascularization in patients with acute chest pain syndrome (ACPS) was investigated. A total of 107 patients with ACPS presenting to the emergency department and referred to cardiology were prospectively enrolled and underwent CTA. From the clinical features, the patients were categorized as having high-risk acute coronary syndrome features or no high-risk features. At the treating physician's discretion, the patients underwent risk stratification with either invasive coronary angiography (ICA) or technetium-99m single photon emission computed tomography. All tests were interpreted by experts unaware of the clinical information. All 52 patients with high-risk acute coronary syndrome features underwent ICA. Of the 55 patients with no high-risk features, 36 underwent single photon emission computed tomography and 19 underwent ICA. The patients were followed up until a decision regarding revascularization was made. Compared with ICA, the operating characteristics of CTA (per-patient analysis) were excellent, with a sensitivity of 98% (95% confidence interval [CI] 87% to 100%), specificity of 100% (95% CI 85% to 100%), positive predictive value of 100% (95% CI 90% to 100%), and negative predictive value of 97% (95% CI 80% to 100%). The agreement between CTA and routine testing (single photon emission computed tomography or ICA) was very good (κ = 0.94). CTA correctly identified 40 patients (100%) who underwent revascularization and 61 (91.0%) who were treated medically (κ = 0.88, 95% CI 0.79 to 0.97). In conclusion, CTA might represent a single modality that could be used to triage a wide spectrum of patients with ACPS and could have the potential to rule out coronary disease and identify those who might require revascularization.
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