Journal of Nuclear Cardiology

, Volume 20, Issue 6, pp 1013–1020

Hybrid myocardial imaging for risk stratification prior to kidney transplantation: Added value of coronary calcium and epicardial adipose tissue

  • Cristina Karohl
  • Luis D’Marco
  • Antonio Bellasi
  • Paolo Raggi
Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s12350-013-9761-8

Cite this article as:
Karohl, C., D’Marco, L., Bellasi, A. et al. J. Nucl. Cardiol. (2013) 20: 1013. doi:10.1007/s12350-013-9761-8



Patient selection and optimal approach to risk stratification prior to kidney transplantation remain uncertain. We sought new predictors of an abnormal myocardial perfusion (MYP) stress test result.


Retrospective study of 411 consecutive chronic kidney disease stages 4-5D patients awaiting kidney transplantation referred for risk stratification. PET-CT or SPECT-CT was used to assess MYP and quantify coronary artery calcium (CAC) and epicardial adipose tissue (EAT). Abnormal MYP was defined as a perfusion defect involving ≥5% of the left ventricular myocardium.


Fixed or reversible MYP defects were present in 41 patients (10%). Male sex, smoking, and history of cardiovascular disease were more prevalent; age was higher and CAC and EAT were greater in patients with MYP defects than in those with normal MYP. On multivariate logistic regression, EAT and CAC were independent predictors of abnormal MYP while diabetes mellitus showed a borderline association (P = .08). EAT added incremental diagnostic value to a model including age, CAC and diabetes mellitus [AUC 0.73 (95% CI 0.64-0.81) to 0.76 (95% CI 0.68-0.84; P = .02)]. Furthermore, the model containing EAT showed improved diagnostic discrimination.


Abnormal MYP on screening stress testing appears to be rare in patients awaiting kidney transplantation suggesting an excess of testing. EAT and CAC may help predict what patients are at higher risk of developing abnormalities of MYP under stress.


Myocardial perfusion imagingSPECTPET/CT imagingcoronary artery disease

Copyright information

© American Society of Nuclear Cardiology 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Cristina Karohl
    • 1
  • Luis D’Marco
    • 2
  • Antonio Bellasi
    • 3
  • Paolo Raggi
    • 4
    • 5
  1. 1.Hospital de Clinicas de Porto Alegre, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do SulPorto AlegreBrazil
  2. 2.Department of NephrologyHospital Universitario Ruíz y Páez, Universidad de OrienteCiudad BolívarVenezuela
  3. 3.Department of NephrologyOspedale Sant’AnnaComoItaly
  4. 4.Mazankowski Alberta Heart InstituteUniversity of Alberta School of MedicineEdmontonCanada
  5. 5.Department of RadiologyEmory UniversityAtlantaUSA