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Open Access Highly Accessed Open Badges Research article

Variation in heart rate influences the assessment of transient ischemic dilation in myocardial perfusion scintigraphy

William D Leslie12*, Daniel P Levin2 and Sandor J Demeter2

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Medicine, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Canada

2 Section of Nuclear Medicine, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Canada

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BMC Nuclear Medicine 2007, 7:1  doi:10.1186/1471-2385-7-1

Published: 11 January 2007



Transient arrhythmias can affect transient ischemic dilation (TID) ratios. This study was initiated to evaluate the frequency and effect of normal heart rate change on TID measures in routine clinical practice.


Consecutive patients undergoing stress/rest sestamibi gated myocardial perfusion scintigraphy were studied (N = 407). Heart rate at the time of stress and rest imaging were recorded. TID ratios were analyzed in relation to absolute change in heart rate (stress minus rest) for subjects with normal perfusion and systolic function (Group 1, N = 169) and those with abnormalities in perfusion and/or function (Group 2, N = 238).


In Group 1, mean TID ratio was inversely correlated with the change in heart rate (r = -0.47, P < 0.0001). For every increase of 10 BPM in heart rate change, the TID ratio decreased by approximately 0.06 (95% confidence interval 0.04–0.07). In Group 2, multiple linear regression demonstrated that the change in heart rate (beta = -0.25, P < 0.0001) and the summed difference score (beta = 0.36, P < 0.0001) were independent predictors of the TID ratio.


Normal variation in heart rate between the stress and rest components of myocardial perfusion scans is common and can influence TID ratios in patients with normal and abnormal cardiac scans.