Derivation and validation of a new angiographic score of right coronary artery perfusion

Eur Heart J. 1993 Apr;14(4):469-73. doi: 10.1093/eurheartj/14.4.469.


A semi-quantitative right coronary artery score (RCA score) was derived from the ratio of the number of the major left ventricular branches of the right coronary artery to the total of the right coronary and left circumflex arteries, to stratify the extent of perfusion in patients with right coronary artery dominance. Thirty-seven patients with one-vessel coronary disease involving a dominant right coronary artery proximal to the left ventricular branches were selected for study. Thallium scintigraphy was performed after right intracoronary injection in 11 patients, and 26 patients underwent conventional stress thallium scintigraphy (24 exercise thallium and two dipyridamole thallium scintigraphy). Thallium scores of perfusion region size after right intracoronary thallium injection and perfusion defect size in stress thallium studies were quantitated from planar thallium images. Both the RCA score and the regional thallium scores spanned over a wide range. The RCA score (range 0.23-0.85) correlated best with the posterior (70 degrees left anterior oblique view) plus lateral segment (40 degrees left anterior oblique view) thallium score (r = 0.88 and 0.53 for intracoronary and stress thallium studies respectively). It also correlated with the summed thallium scores in the posterior, lateral, apical and inferior segments (r = 0.73 and 0.54 respectively) but not with thallium scores in the apex or inferior segment alone. The proposed RCA score quantitates the variable posterolateral perfusion territory of the right coronary artery, and could stratify the area of myocardium at risk from coronary stenosis in the majority of patients with right coronary dominance.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Angioplasty, Balloon, Coronary
  • Coronary Angiography*
  • Coronary Disease / diagnostic imaging*
  • Coronary Disease / therapy
  • Coronary Vessels / anatomy & histology
  • Coronary Vessels / diagnostic imaging*
  • Dipyridamole
  • Exercise Test
  • Female
  • Heart / diagnostic imaging*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Radionuclide Imaging
  • Thallium Radioisotopes*


  • Thallium Radioisotopes
  • Dipyridamole