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Technetium-99m sestamibi and tetrofosmin myocardial single-photon emission tomography: Can we use the same reference data base?

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The aim of this study was to compare technetium-99m labelled tetrofosmin and sestamibi myocardial perfusion single-photon emission tomography (SPET) with one common sestamibi reference file for bull's eye imaging, with quantitation of the extent and severity of perfusion defects. Twenty patients suspected or known to have coronary artery disease participated in the study. Patients first underwent routine sestamibi myocardial SPET over 2 days, receiving doses of 400–600 MBq at stress and 600–800 MBq at rest. Then within the same week a 1-day tetrofosmin myocardial SPET study was performed, with a dose of 300 MBq at stress, followed 2.5 h later by a dose of 750 MBq at rest. Bull's eye images were generated for visual evaluation. Black-out defects according to the Cequal software analysis were only recorded if they comprised more than 10 pixels in men and 20 in women. According to the Cequal program, extent score and severity scores were expressed as number of pixels and deviations below reference limits. Five patients had normal myocardial SPET imaging with both radiotracers, while 15 had reversible, irreversible or partially reversible defects. The concordance of the results was high. The only two significant differences were that one patient had a reversible defect which appeared to be located in different myocardial regions (LAD vs RCA), and another patient had a defect that was partially reversible with sestamibi but irreversible with tetrofosmin. The results showed very high correlation coefficients for the extent and severity scores (linear correlation coefficient values of 0.99 and 0.94, respectively). In conclusion, it appears that changing between sestamibi and tetrofosmin has little influence on the interpretation of bull's eye images from the data file of a common reference population using one of the tracers.

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Correspondence to Birger Hesse.

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Widding, A., Hesse, B. & Gadsbøll, N. Technetium-99m sestamibi and tetrofosmin myocardial single-photon emission tomography: Can we use the same reference data base?. Eur J Nucl Med 24, 42–45 (1997). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF01728307

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Key words

  • Bull's eye
  • Myocardial single-photon emission tomography
  • Reference data base
  • Technetium-99m sestamibi
  • Technetium-99m tetrofosmin