Assessment of the functional significance of coronary artery lesions during cardiac catheterization has recently become possible by calculating coronary flow reserve from both myocardial contrast appearance time and density in the resting and hyperemic states determined from digitized coronary cineangiograms. However, the interobserver and intraobserver variabilities, as well as the short-, medium-, and long-term variabilities of the coronary flow reserve measurements, have to be established before this technique becomes an acceptable means of assessing the immediate and long-term functional results of revascularization procedures such as percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty (PTCA). Variability was defined as the mean difference and standard deviation of the difference between duplicate determinations of coronary flow reserve. The intraobserver variability (mean difference +/- SD) in the measurement of coronary flow reserve was -0.01 +/- 0.07. Interobserver variability by two observers was +0.08 +/- 0.52. Short-term variability based on the analysis of two coronary cineangiograms taken 5 minutes apart was -0.02 +/- 0.26. Medium-term variability (coronary cineangiographies repeated 1-3 hours apart) was found to be -0.06 +/- 0.52. Long-term variability (coronary cineangiographies repeated 3-5 months apart) was 0.11 +/- 0.63. Having established the reproducibility of this radiographic method, we studied the prospective changes in coronary flow reserve in 25 patients undergoing PTCA for single vessel coronary artery disease. Coronary flow reserve measurements and quantitative coronary cineangiography were performed before, immediately after, and 3-5 months after PTCA. PTCA resulted in an immediate increase in coronary flow reserve from 1 +/- 0.3 to 2.3 +/- 0.6 with a concomitant increase in obstruction area from 0.9 +/- 0.3 to 3.3 +/- 0.7 mm2. Nine of the 25 patients developed restenosis defined as a diameter stenosis greater than 50% at follow-up. The other 16 patients had a coronary flow reserve of 3.3 +/- 0.6, which was measured 3-5 months after PTCA. Coronary flow reserve measurement from digitized coronary cineangiograms is a reproducible method for the assessment of the physiological importance of coronary artery obstructions. Short-, medium-, and long-term investigations of the functional results of interventions such as pharmacological therapy or revascularization can be performed reliably with this technique.

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Keywords *Angioplasty, Balloon, *Coronary Circulation, Adult, Cineangiography/methods/*standards, Coronary Disease/physiopathology/radiography/*therapy, Female, Human, Male, Middle Aged, Time Factors
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Zijlstra, F.J., Reiber, J.H.C., van Es, G.A., Lubsen, J., Serruys, P.W.J.C., & den Boer, A.. (1988). Assessment of immediate and long-term functional results of percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty. Circulation (Baltimore), 78(1), 15–24. Retrieved from