Feasibility of one-eighth time gated myocardial perfusion SPECT functional imaging using IQ-SPECT

Eur J Nucl Med Mol Imaging. 2015 Nov;42(12):1920-8. doi: 10.1007/s00259-015-3142-2. Epub 2015 Aug 1.


Purpose: IQ-SPECT, an add-on to general purpose cameras based on multifocal collimation, can reduce myocardial perfusion imaging (MPI) acquisition times to one-fourth that of standard procedures (to 12 s/view). In a phantom study, a reduction of the acquisition time to one-eighth of the standard time (to 6 s/view) was demonstrated as feasible. It remains unclear whether such a reduction could be extended to clinical practice.

Methods: Fifty patients with suspected or diagnosed CAD underwent a 2-day stress-rest (99m)Tc-sestamibi MPI protocol. Two consecutive SPECT acquisitions (6 and 12 s/view) were performed. Electrocardiogram-gated images were reconstructed with and without attenuation correction (AC). Polar maps were generated and visually scored by two blinded observers for image quality and perfusion in 17 segments. Global and regional summed stress score (SSS), summed rest score (SRS) and summed difference score (SDS) were determined. Left ventricular volumes and ejection fraction were calculated based on automated contour detection.

Results: Image quality was scored higher with the 12 s/view acquisition, both with and without AC. Summed scores were statistically comparable between the 6 s/view and the 12 s/view acquisition, both globally and in individual coronary territories (e.g. in images with AC, SSS were 6.6 ± 8.3 and 6.2 ± 8.2 with 6 s and 12 s/view, respectively, p = 0.10; SRS were 3.9 ± 5.6 and 3.5 ± 5.3, respectively, p = 0.19; and SDS were 2.8 ± 5.7 and 2.6 ± 5.7, respectively, p = 0.59). Both acquisitions allowed MPI-based diagnosis of CAD in 25 of the 50 patients (with AC). Calculated end-diastolic volume (EDV) and end-systolic volume (ESV) were modestly higher with the 6 s/view acquisition than with the 12 s/view acquisition (EDV +4.8 ml at rest and +3.7 ml after stress, p = 0.003; ESV +4.1 ml at rest and +2.6 ml after stress, p = 0.01), whereas the ejection fraction did not differ (-1.2 % at rest, p = 0.20, and -0.9 % after stress, p = 0.27).

Conclusion: Image quality and LV functional parameters obtained with a one-eighth acquisition time were statistically comparable to the previously validated one-fourth time protocol using IQ-SPECT. Shorter acquisition times without loss of diagnostic accuracy provide improved patient comfort and streamlined departmental efficiency.

Keywords: 99mTc-sestamibi SPECT/CT; Coronary artery disease; IQ SPECT; Low-count acquisition; Myocardial perfusion imaging.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Cardiac-Gated Single-Photon Emission Computer-Assisted Tomography / methods*
  • Coronary Artery Disease / diagnostic imaging
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Time Factors