Assessment of Coronary Artery Aneurysms Caused by Kawasaki Disease Using Transluminal Attenuation Gradient Analysis of Computerized Tomography Angiograms

Am J Cardiol. 2017 Aug 15;120(4):556-562. doi: 10.1016/j.amjcard.2017.05.025. Epub 2017 May 30.


Patients with coronary artery aneurysms (CAAs) resulting from Kawasaki disease (KD) are at risk for thrombosis and myocardial infarction. Current guidelines recommend CAA diameter ≥8 mm as the criterion for initiating systemic anticoagulation. Transluminal attenuation gradient (TAG) analysis has been proposed as a noninvasive method for evaluating functional significance of coronary stenoses using computerized tomography angiography (CTA), but has not previously been used in CAA. We hypothesized that abnormal hemodynamics in CAA caused by KD could be quantified using TAG analysis. We studied 23 patients with a history of KD who had undergone clinically indicated CTA. We quantified TAG in the major coronary arteries and aneurysm geometry was characterized using maximum diameter, aneurysm shape index, and sphericity index. A total of 55 coronary arteries were analyzed, 25 of which had at least 1 aneurysmal region. TAG in aneurysmal arteries was significantly lower than in normal arteries (-23.5 ± 10.7 vs -10.5 ± 9.0, p = 0.00002). Aneurysm diameter, aneurysm shape index, and sphericity index were weakly correlated with TAG (r2 = 0.01, p = 0.6; r2 = 0.15, p = 0.06; r2 = 0.16, p = 0.04). This is the first application of TAG analysis to CAA caused by KD, and demonstrates significantly different TAG values in aneurysmal versus normal arteries. Lack of correlation between TAG and CAA geometry suggests that TAG may provide hemodynamic information not available from anatomy alone. TAG represents a possible extension to standard CTA for KD patients who may improve thrombotic risk stratification and aid in clinical decision making.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Computed Tomography Angiography / methods*
  • Coronary Aneurysm / diagnosis*
  • Coronary Aneurysm / etiology
  • Coronary Aneurysm / physiopathology
  • Coronary Angiography / methods*
  • Coronary Vessels / diagnostic imaging*
  • Coronary Vessels / physiopathology
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Fractional Flow Reserve, Myocardial / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Mucocutaneous Lymph Node Syndrome / complications*
  • Regional Blood Flow / physiology*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Young Adult