Publications by authors named "Sarah Feger"

14 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Detection of relevant extracardiac findings on coronary computed tomography angiography vs. invasive coronary angiography.

Eur Radiol 2021 Jun 15. Epub 2021 Jun 15.

Department of Radiology, Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Charitéplatz 1, 10117, Berlin, Germany.

Objectives: To compare the detection of relevant extracardiac findings (ECFs) on coronary computed tomography angiography (CTA) and invasive coronary angiography (ICA) and evaluate the potential clinical benefit of their detection.

Methods: This is the prespecified subanalysis of ECFs in patients presenting with a clinical indication for ICA based on atypical angina and suspected coronary artery disease (CAD) included in the prospective single-center randomized controlled Coronary Artery Disease Management (CAD-Man) study. ECFs requiring immediate therapy and/or further workup including additional imaging were defined as clinically relevant. We evaluated the scope of ECFs in 329 patients and analyzed the potential clinical benefit of their detection.

Results: ECFs were detected in 107 of 329 patients (32.5%; CTA: 101/167, 60.5%; ICA: 6/162, 3.7%; p < .001). Fifty-nine patients had clinically relevant ECFs (17.9%; CTA: 55/167, 32.9%; ICA: 4/162, 2.5%; p < .001). In the CTA group, ECFs potentially explained atypical chest pain in 13 of 101 patients with ECFs (12.9%). After initiation of therapy, chest pain improved in 4 (4.0%) and resolved in 7 patients (6.9%). Follow-up imaging was recommended in 33 (10.0%; CTA: 30/167, 18.0%; ICA: 3/162, 1.9%) and additional clinic consultation in 26 patients (7.9%; CTA: 25/167, 15.0%; ICA: 1/162, 0.6%). Malignancy was newly diagnosed in one patient (0.3%; CTA: 1/167, 0.6%; ICA: 0).

Conclusions: In this randomized study, CTA but not ICA detected clinically relevant ECFs that may point to possible other causes of chest pain in patients without CAD. Thus, CTA might preclude the need for ICA in those patients.

Trial Registration: NCT Unique ID: 00844220 KEY POINTS: • CTA detects ten times more clinically relevant ECFs than ICA. • Actionable clinically relevant ECFs affect patient management and therapy and may thus improve chest pain. • Detection of ECFs explaining chest pain on CTA might preclude the need for performing ICA.
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June 2021

Coronary Computed Tomography Angiography.

JAMA 2020 Oct;324(14):1455-1456

Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Berlin, Germany.

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October 2020

Clinical pre-test probability for obstructive coronary artery disease: insights from the European DISCHARGE pilot study.

Eur Radiol 2021 Mar 9;31(3):1471-1481. Epub 2020 Sep 9.

Dept. of Coronary and Structural Heart Diseases, Institute of Cardiology, Warsaw, Poland.

Objectives: To test the accuracy of clinical pre-test probability (PTP) for prediction of obstructive coronary artery disease (CAD) in a pan-European setting.

Methods: Patients with suspected CAD and stable chest pain who were clinically referred for invasive coronary angiography (ICA) or computed tomography (CT) were included by clinical sites participating in the pilot study of the European multi-centre DISCHARGE trial. PTP of CAD was determined using the Diamond-Forrester (D+F) prediction model initially introduced in 1979 and the updated D+F model from 2011. Obstructive coronary artery disease (CAD) was defined by one at least 50% diameter coronary stenosis by both CT and ICA.

Results: In total, 1440 patients (654 female, 786 male) were included at 25 clinical sites from May 2014 until July 2017. Of these patients, 725 underwent CT, while 715 underwent ICA. Both prediction models overestimated the prevalence of obstructive CAD (31.7%, 456 of 1440 patients, PTP: initial D+F 58.9% (28.1-90.6%), updated D+F 47.3% (34.2-59.9%), both p < 0.001), but overestimation of disease prevalence was higher for the initial D+F (p < 0.001). The discriminative ability was higher for the updated D+F 2011 (AUC of 0.73 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.70-0.76 versus AUC of 0.70 CI 0.67-0.73 for the initial D+F; p < 0.001; odds ratio (or) 1.55 CI 1.29-1.86, net reclassification index 0.11 CI 0.05-0.16, p < 0.001).

Conclusions: Clinical PTP calculation using the initial and updated D+F prediction models relevantly overestimates the actual prevalence of obstructive CAD in patients with stable chest pain clinically referred for ICA and CT suggesting that further refinements to improve clinical decision-making are needed.

Trial Registration: KEY POINTS: • Clinical pre-test probability calculation using the initial and updated D+F model overestimates the prevalence of obstructive CAD identified by ICA and CT. • Overestimation of disease prevalence is higher for the initial D+F compared with the updated D+F. • Diagnostic accuracy of PTP assessment varies strongly between different clinical sites throughout Europe.
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March 2021

Health-related qualify of life, angina type and coronary artery disease in patients with stable chest pain.

Health Qual Life Outcomes 2020 05 14;18(1):140. Epub 2020 May 14.

Department of Cardiology, Hospital of Lithuanian University of Health Sciences Kaunas Clinics, Kaunas, Lithuania.

Background: Health-related quality of life (HRQoL) is impaired in patients with stable angina but patients often present with other forms of chest pain. The aim of this study was to compare the pre-diagnostic HRQoL in patients with suspected coronary artery disease (CAD) according to angina type, gender, and presence of obstructive CAD.

Methods: From the pilot study for the European DISCHARGE trial, we analysed data from 24 sites including 1263 patients (45.9% women, 61.1 ± 11.3 years) who were clinically referred for invasive coronary angiography (ICA; 617 patients) or coronary computed tomography angiography (CTA; 646 patients). Prior to the procedures, patients completed HRQoL questionnaires: the Short Form (SF)-12v2, the EuroQoL (EQ-5D-3 L) and the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale.

Results: Fifty-five percent of ICA and 35% of CTA patients had typical angina, 23 and 33% had atypical angina, 18 and 28% had non-anginal chest discomfort and 5 and 5% had other chest discomfort, respectively. Patients with typical angina had the poorest physical functioning compared to the other angina groups (SF-12 physical component score; 41.2 ± 8.8, 43.3 ± 9.1, 46.2 ± 9.0, 46.4 ± 11.4, respectively, all age and gender-adjusted p < 0.01), and highest anxiety levels (8.3 ± 4.1, 7.5 ± 4.1, 6.5 ± 4.0, 4.7 ± 4.5, respectively, all adjusted p < 0.01). On all other measures, patients with typical or atypical angina had lower HRQoL compared to the two other groups (all adjusted p < 0.05). HRQoL did not differ between patients with and without obstructive CAD while women had worse HRQoL compared with men, irrespective of age and angina type.

Conclusions: Prior to a diagnostic procedure for stable chest pain, HRQoL is associated with chest pain characteristics, but not with obstructive CAD, and is significantly lower in women.

Trial Registration:, NCT02400229.
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May 2020

Patient Preferences for Coronary CT Angiography with Stress Perfusion, SPECT, or Invasive Coronary Angiography.

Radiology 2019 05 19;291(2):340-348. Epub 2019 Mar 19.

From the Department of Cardiology, Johns Hopkins Hospital and Health System, Baltimore, Md (A.M., A.L.V., M.R.O., M.M., C.C., P.M.); Departments of Radiology (M.D., M.L., M.R., S.F., M.P.) and Anesthesiology (E.S.), Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Humboldt-Universität and Freie Universität zu Berlin, Schumannstr 20/21, Berlin 10117, Germany; Department of Radiology, Keio University School of Medicine, Tokyo, Japan (Y.T.); Heart Institute (InCor), University of São Paulo Medical School, São Paulo, Brazil (C.E.R.); Department of Medicine, Division of Cardiology, St Luke's International Hospital, Tokyo, Japan (H.N.); Department of Cardiology, Rigshospitalet, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark (K.F.K.); Department of Radiology, Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden, the Netherlands (J.G.); Department of Radiology, Mount Elizabeth Hospital, Singapore (J.H.); Laboratory of Cardiac Energetics, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Md (M.Y.C.); Department of Radiology, Mie University Hospital, Tsu, Japan (K.K.); Department of Radiology, Albert Einstein Hospital, São Paulo, Brazil (C.N.); Department of Radiology, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Harvard University, Boston, Mass (M.E.C.); Department of Radiology, University of Ottawa Faculty of Medicine, Ottawa, Canada (F.J.R.); Department of Cardiology, National Heart Center Singapore, Singapore (S.Y.T.); and Department of Radiology, Toronto General Hospital, Toronto, Canada (N.P.).

Background Patient preference is pivotal for widespread adoption of tests in clinical practice. Patient preferences for invasive versus other noninvasive tests for coronary artery disease are not known. Purpose To compare patient acceptance and preferences for noninvasive and invasive cardiac imaging in North and South America, Asia, and Europe. Materials and Methods This was a prospective 16-center trial in 381 study participants undergoing coronary CT angiography with stress perfusion, SPECT, and invasive coronary angiography (ICA). Patient preferences were collected by using a previously validated questionnaire translated into eight languages. Responses were converted to ordinal scales and were modeled with generalized linear mixed models. Results In patients in whom at least one test was associated with pain, CT and SPECT showed reduced median pain levels, reported on 0-100 visual analog scales, from 20 for ICA (interquartile range [IQR], 4-50) to 6 for CT (IQR, 0-27.5) and 5 for SPECT (IQR, 0-25) ( < .001). Patients from Asia reported significantly more pain than patients from other continents for ICA (median, 25; IQR, 10-50; = .01), CT (median, 10; IQR, 0-30; = .02), and SPECT (median, 7; IQR, 0-28; = .03). Satisfaction with preparation differed by continent and test ( = .01), with patients from Asia reporting generally lower ratings. Patients from North America had greater percentages of "very high" or "high" satisfaction than patients from other continents for ICA (96% vs 82%, respectively; < .001) and SPECT (95% vs 79%, respectively; = .04) but not for CT (89% vs 86%, respectively; = .70). Among all patients, CT was preferred by 54% of patients, compared with 18% for SPECT and 28% for ICA ( < .001). Conclusion For cardiac imaging, patients generally favored CT angiography with stress perfusion, while study participants from Asia generally reported lowest satisfaction. © RSNA, 2019 See also the editorial by Woodard and Nguyen in this issue.
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May 2019

Noise reduction and motion elimination in low-dose 4D myocardial computed tomography perfusion (CTP): preliminary clinical evaluation of the ASTRA4D algorithm.

Eur Radiol 2019 Sep 4;29(9):4572-4582. Epub 2019 Feb 4.

Department of Radiology, Charité Medical School, Charitéplatz 1, 10117, Berlin, Germany.

Objectives: To propose and evaluate a four-dimensional (4D) algorithm for joint motion elimination and spatiotemporal noise reduction in low-dose dynamic myocardial computed tomography perfusion (CTP).

Methods: Thirty patients with suspected or confirmed coronary artery disease were prospectively included and underwent dynamic contrast-enhanced 320-row CTP. A novel deformable image registration method based on the principal component analysis (PCA) of the ante hoc temporally smoothed voxel-wise time-attenuation curves (ASTRA4D) is presented. Quantitative (standard deviation, signal-to-noise ratio (SNR), temporal variation, volumetric deformation) and qualitative (motion, contrast, contour sharpness [1, poor; 5, excellent]) measures of CTP quality were assessed for the original and motion-compensated sequences (without and with temporal filtering, PCA/ASTRA4D). Following myocardial perfusion deficit detection by two readers, diagnostic accuracy was evaluated using magnetic resonance myocardial perfusion imaging (MR-MPI) as the reference standard in 15 patients.

Results: Registration using ASTRA4D was successful in all 30 patients and resulted in comparison with the benchmark PCA in significantly (p < 0.001) reduced noise over time (- 83%, 178.5 vs 29.9) and spatially (- 34%, 21.4 vs 14.1) as well as improved SNR (+ 47%, 3.6 vs 5.3) and subjective image quality (motion, contrast, contour sharpness [+ 1.0, + 1.0, + 0.5]). ASTRA4D had significantly improved per-segment sensitivity of 91% (58/64) and similar specificity of 96% (429/446) compared with PCA (52%, 33/64; 98%, 435/446; p = 0.011) in the visual detection of perfusion deficits.

Conclusions: The ASTRA4D registration algorithm improved the spatiotemporal noise profile and CTP sequence image quality, resulting in significantly improved sensitivity of 4D CTP in the detection of myocardial ischemia.

Key Points: • ASTRA4D combines local temporal regression and deformable image registration. • Quantitative and qualitative measures of CTP quality are improved compared to PCA. • Improved spatiotemporal differentiation of ischemic regions leads to an excellent perfusion deficit concordance of ASTRA4D with MRI.
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September 2019

Effect of iterative reconstruction and temporal averaging on contour sharpness in dynamic myocardial CT perfusion: Sub-analysis of the prospective 4D CT perfusion pilot study.

PLoS One 2018 16;13(10):e0205922. Epub 2018 Oct 16.

Department of Radiology, Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Berlin, Germany.

Purpose: Myocardial computed tomography perfusion (CTP) allows the assessment of the functional relevance of coronary artery stenosis. This study investigates to what extent the contour sharpness of sequences acquired by dynamic myocardial CTP is influenced by the following noise reduction methods: temporal averaging and adaptive iterative dose reduction 3D (AIDR 3D).

Materials And Methods: Dynamic myocardial CT perfusion was conducted in 29 patients at a dose level of 9.5±2.0 mSv and was reconstructed with both filtered back projection (FBP) and strong levels of AIDR 3D. Temporal averaging to reduce noise was performed as a post-processing step by combining two, three, four, six and eight original consecutive 3D datasets. We evaluated the contour sharpness at four distinct edges of the left-ventricular myocardium based on two different approaches: the distance between 25% and 75% of the maximal grey value (d) and the slope in the contour (m).

Results: Iterative reconstruction reduced contour sharpness: both measures of contour sharpness performed better for FBP than for AIDR 3D (d = 1.7±0.4 mm versus 2.0±0.5 mm, p>0.059 at all edges; m = 255.9±123.9 HU/mm versus 160.6±123.5 HU/mm; p<0.023 for all edges). Increasing levels of temporal averaging degraded contour sharpness. When FBP reconstruction was applied, contour sharpness was best without temporal averaging (d = 1.7±0.4 mm, m = 255.9±123.9 HU/mm) and poorest for the strongest levels of temporal averaging (d = 2.1±0.3 mm, m = 142.2±104.9 HU/mm; comparison between lowest and highest temporal averaging level: for d p>0.052 at all edges and for m p<0.001 at all edges).

Conclusion: The use of both temporal averaging and iterative reconstruction degrades objective contour sharpness parameters of dynamic myocardial CTP. Thus, further advances in image processing are needed to optimise contour sharpness of 4D myocardial CTP.
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April 2019

Evaluation of computed tomography in patients with atypical angina or chest pain clinically referred for invasive coronary angiography: randomised controlled trial.

BMJ 2016 Oct 24;355:i5441. Epub 2016 Oct 24.

Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Humboldt-Universität and Freie Universität zu Berlin, Germany.

Objective:  To evaluate whether invasive coronary angiography or computed tomography (CT) should be performed in patients clinically referred for coronary angiography with an intermediate probability of coronary artery disease.

Design:  Prospective randomised single centre trial.

Setting:  University hospital in Germany.

Participants:  340 patients with suspected coronary artery disease and a clinical indication for coronary angiography on the basis of atypical angina or chest pain.

Interventions:  168 patients were randomised to CT and 172 to coronary angiography. After randomisation one patient declined CT and 10 patients declined coronary angiography, leaving 167 patients (88 women) and 162 patients (78 women) for analysis. Allocation could not be blinded, but blinded independent investigators assessed outcomes.

Main Outcome Measure:  The primary outcome measure was major procedural complications within 48 hours of the last procedure related to CT or angiography.

Results:  Cardiac CT reduced the need for coronary angiography from 100% to 14% (95% confidence interval 9% to 20%, P<0.001) and was associated with a significantly greater diagnostic yield from coronary angiography: 75% (53% to 90%) v 15% (10% to 22%), P<0.001. Major procedural complications were uncommon (0.3%) and similar across groups. Minor procedural complications were less common in the CT group than in the coronary angiography group: 3.6% (1% to 8%) v 10.5% (6% to 16%), P=0.014. CT shortened the median length of stay in the angiography group from 52.9 hours (interquartile range 49.5-76.4 hours) to 30.0 hours (3.5-77.3 hours, P<0.001). Overall median exposure to radiation was similar between the CT and angiography groups: 5.0 mSv (interquartile range 4.2-8.7 mSv) v 6.4 mSv (3.4-10.7 mSv), P=0.45. After a median follow-up of 3.3 years, major adverse cardiovascular events had occurred in seven of 167 patients in the CT group (4.2%) and six of 162 (3.7%) in the coronary angiography group (adjusted hazard ratio 0.90, 95% confidence interval 0.30 to 2.69, P=0.86). 79% of patients stated that they would prefer CT for subsequent testing. The study was conducted at a University hospital in Germany and thus the performance of CT may be different in routine clinical practice. The prevalence was lower than expected, resulting in an underpowered study for the predefined primary outcome.

Conclusions:  CT increased the diagnostic yield and was a safe gatekeeper for coronary angiography with no increase in long term events. The length of stay was shortened by 22.9 hours with CT, and patients preferred non-invasive testing.Trial registration NCT00844220.
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October 2016

Acceptance of Combined Coronary CT Angiography and Myocardial CT Perfusion versus Conventional Coronary Angiography in Patients with Coronary Stents--Intraindividual Comparison.

PLoS One 2015 1;10(9):e0136737. Epub 2015 Sep 1.

Department of Medicine, Medical School Hannover, Hannover, Germany.

Objectives: To evaluate how well patients with coronary stents accept combined coronary computed tomography angiography (CTA) and myocardial CT perfusion (CTP) compared with conventional coronary angiography (CCA).

Background: While combined CTA and CTP may improve diagnostic accuracy compared with CTA alone, patient acceptance of CTA/CTP remains to be defined.

Methods: A total of 90 patients with coronary stents prospectively underwent CTA/CTP (both with contrast agent, CTP with adenosine) and CCA as part of the CARS-320 study. In this group, an intraindividual comparison of patient acceptance of CTA, CTP, and CCA was performed.

Results: CTP was experienced to be significantly more painful than CTA (p<0.001) and was associated with a higher frequency of dyspnea (p<0.001). Comparison of CTA/CTP with CCA revealed no significant differences in terms of pain (p = 0.141) and comfort (p = 0.377). Concern before CTA/CTP and CCA and overall satisfaction were likewise not significantly different (p = 0.097 and p = 0.123, respectively). Nevertheless, about two thirds (n = 60, 68%) preferred CTA/CTP to CCA (p<0.001). Moreover, patients felt less helpless during CTA/CTP than during CCA (p = 0.026). Lack of invasiveness and absence of pain were the most frequently mentioned advantages of CTA/CTP over CCA in our patient population.

Conclusions: CCA and combined CTA/CTP are equally well accepted by patients; however, more patients prefer CTA/CTP. CTP was associated with more intense pain than CTA and more frequently caused dyspnea than CTA alone.

Trial Registration: NCT00967876.
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May 2016

The Impact of Different Levels of Adaptive Iterative Dose Reduction 3D on Image Quality of 320-Row Coronary CT Angiography: A Clinical Trial.

PLoS One 2015 6;10(5):e0125943. Epub 2015 May 6.

Department of Radiology, Charité Medical School, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Freie Universität Berlin, Berlin, Germany.

Purpose: The aim of this study was the systematic image quality evaluation of coronary CT angiography (CTA), reconstructed with the 3 different levels of adaptive iterative dose reduction (AIDR 3D) and compared to filtered back projection (FBP) with quantum denoising software (QDS).

Methods: Standard-dose CTA raw data of 30 patients with mean radiation dose of 3.2 ± 2.6 mSv were reconstructed using AIDR 3D mild, standard, strong and compared to FBP/QDS. Objective image quality comparison (signal, noise, signal-to-noise ratio (SNR), contrast-to-noise ratio (CNR), contour sharpness) was performed using 21 measurement points per patient, including measurements in each coronary artery from proximal to distal.

Results: Objective image quality parameters improved with increasing levels of AIDR 3D. Noise was lowest in AIDR 3D strong (p ≤ 0.001 at 20/21 measurement points; compared with FBP/QDS). Signal and contour sharpness analysis showed no significant difference between the reconstruction algorithms for most measurement points. Best coronary SNR and CNR were achieved with AIDR 3D strong. No loss of SNR or CNR in distal segments was seen with AIDR 3D as compared to FBP.

Conclusions: On standard-dose coronary CTA images, AIDR 3D strong showed higher objective image quality than FBP/QDS without reducing contour sharpness.

Trial Registration: NCT00967876.
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April 2016