Regional glucose utilization in infarcted and remote myocardium: Its relation to coronary anatomy and perfusion

G. Fragasso, S. L. Chierchia, C. Landoni, G. Lucignani, E. Rossetti, M. Sciammarella, G. E. Vanoli, F. Fazio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We studied the relationships between coronary anatomy, perfusion and metabolism in myocardial segments exhibiting transient and persistent perfusion defects on stress/rest 99Tcm-MIBI single photon emission tomography in 35 patients (31 males, 4 females, mean age 56 ± 7 years) with a previous myocardial infarction. Quantitative coronary angiography and assessment of myocardial perfusion reserve and glucose metabolism were performed within 1 week of one another. Perfusion was assessed by SPET after the intravenous injection of 740 MBq of 99Tcm-MIBI at rest and after exercise. Regional myocardial glucose metabolism was assessed by position emission tomography at rest (200 MBq of 18F-2-deoxyglucose, FDG) after an overnight fast with no glucose loading. All 35 patients exhibited persistent perfusion defects consistent with the clinically identified infarct site, and 27 (77%) also showed various degrees of within-infarct FDG uptake; 11 patients developed exercise-induced transient perfusion defects within, or in the vicinity of, 15 infarct segments and resting FDG uptake was present in 10 of these segments (67%). Five patients also showed exercise-induced transient perfusion defects in nine segments remote from the site of infarct: resting FDG uptake was present in six of these regions (67%). Finally, nine patients had increased glucose uptake in non-infarcted regions not showing transient perfusion defects upon exercise testing and perfused by coronary arteries with only minor irregularities. Our results confirm the presence of viable tissue in a large proportion of infarct sites. Moreover, FDG uptake can be seen in regions per fused by coronary arteries showing minor irregularities, not necessarily resulting in detectable transient perfusion defects on a MIBI stress scan. Since the clinical significance of such findings is not clear, further studies should be conducted to assess the long-term evolution of perfusion, function and metabolism in non-revascularized patients of those remote areas which are apparently normally perfused, but show abnormal fasting FDG uptake after myocardial infarction. Such studies may have important implications for the management of post-infarct patients, as the preservation of coronary vasodilator reserve and myocardial metabolism in remote myocardium may be seen as an additional goal in the treatment of such patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)625-632
Number of pages8
JournalNuclear Medicine Communications
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology


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