Although conventional linear 3-dimensional (3D) reconstruction of coronary arteries by intravascular ultrasound has been widely used for the assessment of plaque volume and progression; the volumetric error (VE) that is produced has not been adequately studied. Linear and geometrically correct 3D reconstruction was applied in 16 coronary arterial segments from 9 patients. Using geometrically correct reconstruction as reference, VE was assessed in 1-mm-long arterial slices. Although for the entire length of the coronary arteries VEs for lumen, external elastic membrane (EEM), and intima-media volumes were minimal (lumen VE 0.4%, -0.8 to 1.8; EEM VE 0.3%, -0.9 to 1.9; intima-media VE 0.4%, -1.4 to 2.2), the VE in each arterial slice exhibited a large variation from -15.6% to 36.2% for lumen volume, from -12.9% to 33.1% for EEM volume, and from -17.2% to 46.7% for intima-media volume, suggesting that linear reconstruction over- or underestimates the true arterial volumes. Lumen VE, EEM VE, and intima-media VE were also significantly higher in curved arterial subsegments than in relatively straight arterial subsegments (p <0.05). In conclusion, in highly curved arterial subsegments, the VE that is produced by linearly stacking the intravascular ultrasound images may be not negligible. Geometrically correct reconstruction of coronary arteries provides more reliable arterial reconstructions and plaque volume measurements. It is anticipated that clinical application of this technique will contribute to more accurate follow-up of the progression of atherosclerosis and assessment of arterial remodeling.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine