Background: Regadenoson, dipyridamole and adenosine are commonly used vasodilators in myocardial perfusion imaging for the detection of obstructive coronary artery disease. There are few comparative studies of the vasodilator properties of regadenoson, adenosine and dipyridamole in humans. The specific aim of this study was to determine the relative potency of these three vasodilators by quantifying stress and rest myocardial perfusion in humans using cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR).
Methods: Fifteen healthy normal volunteers, with Framingham score less than 1% underwent vasodilator stress testing with regadenoson (400 μg bolus), dipyridamole (0.56 mg/kg) and adenosine (140 μg /kg/min) on separate days. Rest perfusion imaging was performed initially. Twenty minutes later, stress imaging was performed at peak vasodilation, i.e. 70 seconds after regadenoson, 4 minutes after dipyridamole infusion and between 3-4 minutes of the adenosine infusion. Myocardial blood flow (MBF) in ml/min/g and myocardial perfusion reserve (MPR) were quantified using a fully quantitative model constrained deconvolution.
Results: Regadenoson produced higher stress MBF than dipyridamole and adenosine (3.58 ± 0.58 vs. 2.81 ± 0.67 vs. 2.78 ± 0.61 ml/min/g, p = 0.0009 and p = 0.0008 respectively). Regadenoson had a much higher heart rate response than adenosine and dipyridamole respectively (95 ± 11 vs. 76 ± 13 vs. 86 ± 12 beats/ minute) When stress MBF was adjusted for heart rate, there were no differences between regadenoson and adenosine (37.8 ± 6 vs. 36.6 ± 4 μl/sec/g, p = NS), but differences between regadenoson and dipyridamole persisted (37.8 ± 6 vs. 32.6 ± 5 μl/sec/g, p = 0.03). The unadjusted MPR was higher with regadenoson (3.11 ± 0.63) when compared with adenosine (2.7 ± 0.61, p = 0.02) and when compared with dipyridamole (2.61 ± 0.57, p = 0.04). Similar to stress MBF, these differences in MPR between regadenoson and adenosine were abolished when adjusted for heart rate (2.04 ± 0.34 vs. 2.12 ± 0.27, p = NS), but persisted between regadenoson and dipyridamole (2.04 ± 0.34 vs. 1.77 ± 0.33, p = 0.07) and between adenosine and dipyridamole (2.12 ± 0.27 vs. 1.77 ± 0.33, p = 0.01).
Conclusions: Based on fully quantitative perfusion using CMR, regadenoson and adenosine have similar vasodilator efficacy and are superior to dipyridamole.