Chapter

Vascular imaging

Manish Kalla and Julian Halcox

in Hyperlipidaemia

Published on behalf of Oxford University Press

ISBN: 9780199543502
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199607204 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/med/9780199543502.003.0011

Series: Oxford Cardiology Library

Vascular imaging

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• Atherosclerosis is a dynamic process that affects most medium and large calibre arteries, particularly the coronary and carotid arteries. • Atherosclerotic changes in the arteries develop over many decades before clinical presentation. • First cardiac events are often either myocardial infarction or death, with most acute coronary events triggered by destabilization and rupture of lipid, rich, thin capped, usually only mildly obstructive plaques. • Early identification of subclinical atherosclerosis and high-risk plaque/preclinical disease is of value in assessing a patient's future risk of developing clinical disease. • Angiography remains the gold standard investigation but visualizes only stenoses, which are a late manifestation of the atherosclerotic process. • Newer modalities such as computed tomography (CT) angiography, B mode carotid ultrasound, and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) can identify at-risk individuals without invasive investigations. • Functional and anatomical imaging together holds great promise in for accurate identification of patients with high-risk plaque.

Chapter.  3720 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Cardiovascular Medicine

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