Spiral flow tube for saline flush in coronary CT angiography: Initial experience

Nobuo Tomizawa, Yayoi Hayakawa, Shinichi Inoh, Takeshi Nojo, Satoshi Uemura, Sunao Nakamura


Aim: To compare the enhancement and visibility of coronary arteries using the spiral flow tube with that of the T-tube during coronary CT angiography.

Materials and Methods: This retrospective study consisted of 110 patients. The first 55 patients underwent coronary CT angiography with the conventional T-tube, while the last 55 patients used the novel spiral flow tube. Coronary attenuation of proximal and distal segments were measured and the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) were calculated. To assess the visibility of distal segments, the number of coronary branches of 1 mm at their origin was counted.

Results: The spiral flow tube significantly increased the average attenuation of proximal (413 ± 40 vs 438 ± 45 HU, p <0.005) and distal segments (403 ±46 vs 441 ± 46 HU, p<0.0001). The SNR in the spiral tube group tended to be higher than the T-tube group and the difference was significant in distal segments (14.0 ± 2.9 vs 15.4 ± 4.1, p = 0.04). The depiction of coronary branches improved with the spiral flow tube (16.0 ± 4.8 vs 17.8 ± 4.4, p = 0.04).

Conclusion: The spiral flow tube increased the enhancement of coronary arteries and improved the visibility of distal segments in coronary CT angiography.


Coronary angiography; computed tomography; contrast media; image quality enhancement; saline

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