Objectives: The aim of this prospective study was to investigate the agreement in findings between ECG-gated CT and transoesophageal echocardiography (TEE) in patients with aortic prosthetic valve endocarditis (PVE).
Methods: Twenty-seven consecutive patients with PVE underwent 64-slice ECG-gated CT and TEE and the results were compared. Imaging was compared with surgical findings (surgery was performed in 16 patients).
Results: TEE suggested the presence of PVE in all patients [thickened aortic wall (n = 17), vegetation (n = 13), abscess (n = 16), valvular dehiscence (n = 10)]. ECG-gated CT was positive in 25 patients (93 %) [thickened aortic wall (n = 19), vegetation (n = 7), abscess (n = 18), valvular dehiscence (n = 7)]. The strength of agreement [kappa (95 % CI)] between ECG-gated CT and TEE was very good for thickened wall [0.83 (0.62-1.0)], good for abscess [0.68 (0.40-0.97)] and dehiscence [0.75 (0.48-1.0)], and moderate for vegetation [0.55 (0.26-0.88)]. The agreement was good between surgical findings (abscess, vegetation and dehiscence) and imaging for ECG-gated CT [0.66 (0.49-0.87)] and TEE [0.79 (0.62-0.96)] and very good for the combination of ECG-gated CT and TEE [0.88 (0.74-1.0)].
Conclusion: Our results indicate that ECG-gated CT has comparable diagnostic performance to TEE and may be a valuable complement in the preoperative evaluation of patients with aortic PVE.