Cardiac Computed Tomography Assessment in Acute Coronary Syndromes — Do We Have Time for It in Emergency Settings?

DOI: 10.1515/jim-2017-0051


The diagnosis and treatment of acute coronary syndrome remain a challenge for clinicians in many clinical settings, especially in patients with previous low-to-intermediate risk. Due to its high specificity and sensitivity for detecting significant coronary artery stenoses, cardiac com-puted tomography angiography (CCTA) tends to be used more frequently in the emergency room (ER) in the last years. This technique has been associated with a higher rate of safe discharge in patients with chest pain, less time spent in the ER, and decreased costs related to further investigations. In cases positive for coronary artery stenosis, CCTA can accurately evaluate the indication for percutaneous coronary angioplasty and can offer relevant informa- tion related to the characteristics of the coronary plaques, being able to detect vulnerable coronary plaques. The aim of this manuscript is to highlight the possibility of using CCTA in the ER in the assessment of patients with chest pain and to show the benefits of the procedure regarding safety, costs, accuracy, and time.

Keywords: coronary computed tomography angiography, acute coronary syndrome, emer-
gency department

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