Coronary risk equivalence of diabetes assessed by SPECT-MPI.

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Publication Date



Medical Education, Cardiology

Journal Title

Journal of nuclear cardiology : official publication of the American Society of Nuclear Cardiology

MeSH Headings

Aged, Coronary Artery Disease, Diabetes Complications, Diabetes Mellitus, Female, Follow-Up Studies, Humans, Image Processing, Computer-Assisted, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Male, Middle Aged, Multimodal Imaging, Multivariate Analysis, Myocardial Infarction, Myocardial Perfusion Imaging, Prognosis, Prospective Studies, Retrospective Studies, Risk, Tomography, Emission-Computed, Single-Photon


BACKGROUND: Several publications and guidelines designate diabetes mellitus (DM) as a coronary artery disease (CAD) risk equivalent. The aim of this investigation was to examine DM cardiac risk equivalence from the perspective of stress SPECT myocardial perfusion imaging (MPI).

METHODS AND RESULTS: We examined cardiovascular outcomes (cardiac death or nonfatal MI) of 17,499 patients referred for stress SPECT-MPI. Patients were stratified into four categories: non-DM without CAD, non-DM with CAD, DM without CAD, and DM with CAD, and normal or abnormal perfusion. Cardiac events occurred in 872 (5%), with event-free survival best among non-DM without CAD, worst in DM with CAD, and intermediate in DM without CAD, and non-DM with CAD. After multivariate adjustment, risk remained comparable between DM without CAD and non-DM with CAD [AHR 1.0 (95% CI 0.84-1.28), P =0.74]. Annualized event rates for normal subjects were 1.4% and 1.6% for non-DM with CAD and DM without CAD, respectively (P = 0.48) and 3.5% (P = 0.95) for both abnormal groups. After multivariate adjustment, outcomes were comparable within normal [AHR 1.4 (95% CI 0.98-1.96) P = 0.06] and abnormal [AHR 1.1 (95% CI 0.83-1.50) P = 0.49] MPI.

CONCLUSIONS: Diabetic patients without CAD have comparable risk of cardiovascular events as non-diabetic patients with CAD after stratification by MPI results. These findings support diabetes as a CAD equivalent and suggest that MPI provides additional prognostic information in such patients.



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