CT-derived fractional flow reserve (FFRct) for functional coronary artery evaluation in the follow-up of patients after heart transplantation

Ricardo P. J. Budde*, Fay M. A. Nous, Stefan Roest, Alina A. Constantinescu, Koen Nieman, Jasper J. Brugts, Lynne M. Koweek, Alexander Hirsch, Jonathon Leipsic, Olivier C. Manintveld

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)
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Abstract

Objectives: Invasively measured fractional flow reserve (FFR) is associated with outcome in heart transplant (HTx) patients. Coronary computed tomography angiography (CCTA)–derived FFR (FFRct) provides additional functional information from anatomical CT images. We describe the first use of FFRct in HTx patients. Methods: HTx patients underwent CCTA with FFRct to screen for cardiac allograft vasculopathy. FFRct was measured distal to each coronary stenosis > 30% and FFRct ≤ 0.8 indicated hemodynamically significant stenosis. FFRct was also measured at the most distal location of each vessel. Overall distal FFRct was calculated as the mean of the distal values in the left, right, and circumflex coronary artery in each patient. Results: Seventy-three patients (age 56 (42–65) years, 63% males) at 11 (8–16) years after HTx were included. Eighteen (25%) patients had a focal hemodynamically significant stenosis (stenosis > 30% with FFRct ≤ 0.8). In the 55 patients without a hemodynamically significant focal FFRct stenosis (FFRct > 0.80), the distal left anterior descending artery FFRct was < 0.90 in 74% of the patients and 10 (18%) patients had ≥ 1 coronary artery with a distal FFRct ≤ 0.8, including 1 with a distal FFRct ≤ 0.8 in all coronaries. Overall distal FFRct in patients without focal stenosis was 0.88 (0.86–0.91), 0.87 (0.86–0.90), and 0.88 (0.86–0.91) (median with 25th–75th percentile) at 5–9, 10–14, or ≥ 15 years post-transplantation, respectively (p = 0.93). Conclusions: FFRct performed on CCTA scans of HTx patients demonstrated that 25% of patients had a focal coronary stenosis with FFRct ≤ 0.8. Even without a focal stenosis, FFRct values are often abnormal in HTx patients. Key Points: • This is the first report describing the use of FFRct in in heart transplant patients. • FFRct identifies patients after heart transplantation with hemodynamically significant coronary stenosis. • Even without a focal stenosis, FFRct values are often abnormal in heart transplant patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1843-1852
Number of pages10
JournalEuropean Radiology
Volume32
Issue number3
Early online date15 Sept 2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study has received funding from Heartflow.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021, The Author(s).

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