OBJECTIVES:Â In the United States, >8 million patients require emergency department evaluation for acute chest pain annually at an estimated diagnostic cost of >$10 billion. The purpose of this study was to compare the efficiency, cost, and safety of a diagnostic strategy employing early coronary computed tomographic angiography (CCTA) to a strategy employing rest-stress myocardial perfusion imaging (MPI) in the evaluation of acute low-risk chest pain.
METHODS: This multicenter, randomized clinical trial in 16 emergency departments ran between June 2007 and November 2008. Patients were randomly allocated to CCTA (n = 361) or MPI (n = 338) as the index noninvasive test. The primary outcome was time to diagnosis; the secondary outcomes were emergency department costs of care and safety, defined as freedom from major adverse cardiac events in patients with normal index tests, including 6-month follow-up.
RESULTS: The CCTA resulted in a 54% reduction in time to diagnosis compared with MPI (median 2.9 h [25th to 75th percentile: 2.1 to 4.0 h] vs. 6.3 h [25th to 75th percentile: 4.2 to 19.0 h], p < 0.0001). Costs of care were 38% lower compared with standard (median $2,137 [25th to 75th percentile: $1,660 to $3,077] vs. $3,458 [25th to 75th percentile: $2,900 to $4,297], p < 0.0001). The diagnostic strategies had no difference in major adverse cardiac events after normal index testing (0.8% in the CCTA arm vs. 0.4% in the MPI arm, p = 0.29).
CONCLUSIONS: In emergency department acute, low-risk chest pain patients, the use of CCTA results in more rapid and cost-efficient safe diagnosis than rest-stress MPI. Further studies comparing CCTA to other diagnostic strategies are needed to optimize evaluation of specific patient subsets. Tanoh Kpassagnon Authentic Jersey