Objective: To compare the influence of different iodinated contrast media with several dilutions on plaque attenuation in an ex vivo coronary model studied by multislice CT coronary angiography. Methods: In six ex vivo left anterior descending coronary arteries immersed in oil, CT (slices/collimation 64x0.625mm, temporal resolution 210 ms, pitch 0.2) was performed after intracoronary injection of a saline solution, and solutions of a dimeric isosmolar contrast medium (Iodixanol 320 mgI ml-1) and a monomeric high-iodinated contrast medium (Iomeprol 400 mgI ml-1) with dilutions of 1/80 (low concentration), 1/50 (medium concentration), 1/40 (high concentration) and 1/20 (very high concentration). Two radiologists drew regions of interest in the lumen and in calcified and non-calcified plaques for each solution. 29 cross-sections with non-calcified plaques and 32 cross-sections with calcified plaques were evaluated. Results: Both contrast media showed different attenuation values within lumen and plaque (p<0.0001). The correlation between lumen and non-calcified plaque values was good (Iodixanol r=0.793, Iomeprol r=0.647). Clustered medium- and high-concentration solutions showed similar plaque attenuation values, signal-to-noise ratios (SNRs) (non-calcified plaque: mediumsolution SNR 31.3±15 vs 31.4±20, high solution SNR 39.4±17 vs 37.4±22; calcified plaque: medium solution SNR 305.2±133 vs 298.8±132, high solution SNR 323.9±138 vs 293±123) and derived contrast-to-noise ratios (p>0.05). Conclusion: Differently iodinated contrast media have a similar influence on plaque attenuation profiles. Advances in knowledge: Since iodine load affects coronary plaque attenuation linearly, different contrast media may be equally employed for coronary atherosclerotic plaque imaging.

dx.doi.org/10.1259/bjr.20120238, hdl.handle.net/1765/61031
British Journal of Radiology
Department of Radiology

la Grutta, L, Galia, M, Gentile, G, Lo Re, G, Grassedonio, E, Coppolino, F, … Midiri, M. (2013). Comparison of iodinated contrast media for the assessment of atherosclerotic plaque attenuation values by CT coronary angiography: Observations in an ex vivo model. British Journal of Radiology, 86(1021). doi:10.1259/bjr.20120238