New Technique for Detecting Pulmonary Embolism
According to a study published in The Journal of Nuclear Medicine (JNM) , combining a low dose computed tomography (CT) with a form of molecular imaging called single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) may provide an accurate diagnosis for pulmonary embolism. The researchers tested the diagnostic accuracy of SPECT/CT imaging for pulmonary embolism against that of multidetector CT angiography (MDCT) alone.
Pulmonary embolism is caused when a blood clot travels to a person's lungs from another location in the body, usually the legs.
The researchers studied a total of 196 patients suspected of having acute pulmonary embolism from June 2006 to February 2008. Their study found that SPECT plus low-dose CT had a sensitivity of 97% and a specificity of 100%, whereas MDCT alone had a sensitivity of 68% and a specificity of 100%.
The researchers concluded that having an effective technique for diagnosing pulmonary embolism leads to more rapid and successful diagnosis.