Effects of atrial fibrillation on myocardial washout rate of thallium-201 on myocardial perfusion single-photon emission computed tomography

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Abstract

Background

Myocardial perfusion single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) with thallium (Tl)-201 is an established modality for evaluating myocardial ischemia. We assessed the effects of atrial fibrillation (AF) on the myocardial washout rate (WR) of Tl-201 on myocardial perfusion SPECT.

Patients and methods

A total of 231 patients with no evidence of myocardial ischemia were enrolled retrospectively in this study. Patients were divided into two groups on the basis of the ECG at the time of myocardial perfusion SPECT. The mean myocardial WR of Tl-201 was calculated from the stress and the redistribution Bull’s eye maps.

Results

There were 34 patients with AF and 197 patients with sinus rhythm. There were no significant differences in clinical variables, except for older age and higher heart rate in patients with AF. Myocardial WR of Tl-201 was significantly lower in patients with AF than those with sinus rhythm (46±12 vs. 51±8%, P=0.03). Multivariate analysis including these factors showed that female sex (β=0.18, P=0.02), AF (β=−0.14 P=0.03), hemoglobin (β=−0.18, P<0.01), and serum creatinine (β=0.24, P<0.01) were determinants of myocardial WR of Tl-201.

Conclusion

Our data suggest that AF is associated with reduced myocardial WR of Tl-201 on myocardial perfuison SPECT.

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