Coronary Computed Tomography Angiography: Enhancing Risk Stratification and Diagnosis of Cardiovascular Disease in Women
Current Treatment Options in Cardiovascular Medicine
Purpose of review: There are numerous gender- and sex-based differences that contribute to the increased morbidity and mortality related to atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD) in women. Early detection of risk and targeted management of atherosclerotic disease is fundamental to reduce ASCVD risk and improve outcomes in women. In this review, we examine the utility of cardiac computed tomography (CT) and coronary CT angiography (CTA) in three ASCVD scenarios including coronary artery calcium scoring for risk stratification in asymptomatic women, and coronary CTA for diagnosis and prognosis of stable ischemic heart disease and acute chest pain. The risks of radiation exposure and the potential applications of novel technologies in women are explored.
Recent findings: CTA provides the capabilities of early recognition and management of nonobstructive coronary artery disease (CAD). Recent advancements in plaque composition and morphology further enhance the prognostic yield from coronary CTA. Innovations in stress perfusion and computational fluid dynamics allow for evaluation of physiological measures of ischemia. In addition, developments in artificial intelligence (AI) may also help unlock a deeper understanding of atherosclerosis and risk in women. Coronary CTA is an accurate and useful modality for early detection and management of ASCVD in women. Novel technologies hold great promise for furthering our understanding of sex-specific pathophysiology and potential improvement in clinical management and outcomes.
Karnib S, Chinnaiyan KM. Coronary Computed Tomography Angiography: Enhancing Risk Stratification and Diagnosis of Cardiovascular Disease in Women. Curr Treat Options Cardiovasc Med. 2019 Oct 4;21(10):62. doi: 10.1007/s11936-019-0760-1. PMID: 31584125.