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Imaging of the unstable plaque: how far have we got?


Matter, C M; Stuber, M; Nahrendorf, M (2009). Imaging of the unstable plaque: how far have we got? European Heart Journal, 30(21):2566-2574.

Abstract

Rupture of unstable plaques may lead to myocardial infarction or stroke and is the leading cause of morbidity and mortality in western countries. Thus, there is a clear need for identifying these vulnerable plaques before the rupture occurs. Atherosclerotic plaques are a challenging imaging target as they are small and move rapidly, especially in the coronary tree. Many of the currently available imaging tools for clinical use still provide minimal information about the biological characteristics of plaques, because they are limited with respect to spatial and temporal resolution. Moreover, many of these imaging tools are invasive. The new generation of imaging modalities such as magnetic resonance imaging, nuclear imaging such as positron emission tomography and single photon emission computed tomography, computed tomography, fluorescence imaging, intravascular ultrasound, and optical coherence tomography offer opportunities to overcome some of these limitations. This review discusses the potential of these techniques for imaging the unstable plaque.

Rupture of unstable plaques may lead to myocardial infarction or stroke and is the leading cause of morbidity and mortality in western countries. Thus, there is a clear need for identifying these vulnerable plaques before the rupture occurs. Atherosclerotic plaques are a challenging imaging target as they are small and move rapidly, especially in the coronary tree. Many of the currently available imaging tools for clinical use still provide minimal information about the biological characteristics of plaques, because they are limited with respect to spatial and temporal resolution. Moreover, many of these imaging tools are invasive. The new generation of imaging modalities such as magnetic resonance imaging, nuclear imaging such as positron emission tomography and single photon emission computed tomography, computed tomography, fluorescence imaging, intravascular ultrasound, and optical coherence tomography offer opportunities to overcome some of these limitations. This review discusses the potential of these techniques for imaging the unstable plaque.

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53 citations in Web of Science®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, further contribution
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Center for Integrative Human Physiology
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Cardiology
04 Faculty of Medicine > Institute of Physiology
07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Physiology
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:November 2009
Deposited On:11 Nov 2009 11:36
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 13:32
Publisher:Oxford University Press
ISSN:0195-668X
Publisher DOI:10.1093/eurheartj/ehp419
PubMed ID:19833636
Permanent URL: http://doi.org/10.5167/uzh-23878

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