Heterogeneity of myocardial perfusion provides the physiological basis of perfusable tissue index

P. Herrero, A. Staudenherz, J. F. Walsh, R. J. Gropler, S. R. Bergmann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


Assessment of viable from nonviable myocardium is critical for the care of patients being considered for revascularization procedures. Recently, the perfusable tissue index (PTI) has been proposed as an index of myocardial viability. Methods: Computer simulations were performed for homogeneously and heterogeneously perfused tissue over a wide range of flows 6.4 ml/g/min) using both bolus and infusion inputs. Results: PTI estimated from simulated homogeneously perfused tissue did reflect the amount of tissue being perfused independent of absolute level of flow, type of input or model configuration, whereas PTI obtained from simulated heterogeneously perfused tissue was consistently lower than the simulated 'true' PTI and varied with flow, type of input function and model configuration. Flow estimated with 15O-water was not significantly different from that measured with radio labeled microspheres. Conclusion: Oxygen-15-water can diffuse into both acutely and chronically ischemic myocardium irrespective of its functional status. The results suggest that PTI is most likely an index of the heterogeneity of myocardial flow rather than an index of the amount of tissue being perfused. Its utility for delineating myocardial viability is thus related to the amount of tissue perfused that has low absolute levels of perfusion or high degrees of flow heterogeneity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)320-327
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Nuclear Medicine
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1 1995

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