Exercise thallium-201 perfusion scintigraphy in the assessment of coronary artery disease
Exercise thallium-201 perfusion scintigraphy has been used extensively over the last decade for the detection and localization of coronary artery disease. Single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) is a refinement of presently available techniques, offering improved identification over planar imaging of individual vessel stenosis and quantification of the extent of abnormally perfused myocardium. In this review, the planar and SPECT techniques are discussed in light of the most recently published large patient series, and with regard to the many factors that affect the sensitivity and specificity of perfusion imaging in identifying coronary artery disease. The clinical implications of exercise perfusion scintigraphy and its future applications in cardiology practice are discussed.