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(1/6913) Regional patterns of myocardial sympathetic denervation in dilated cardiomyopathy: an analysis using carbon-11 hydroxyephedrine and positron emission tomography.

OBJECTIVE: To assess presynaptic function of cardiac autonomic innervation in patients with advanced congestive heart failure using positron emission tomography (PET) and the recently developed radiolabelled catecholamine analogue carbon-11 hydroxyephedrine (HED) as a marker for neuronal catecholamine uptake function. DESIGN AND PATIENTS: 29 patients suffering from dilated cardiomyopathy with moderate to severe heart failure were compared with eight healthy controls. Perfusion scan was followed by HED dynamic PET imaging of cardiac sympathetic innervation. The scintigraphic results were compared with markers of disease severity and the degree of sympathetic dysfunction assessed by means of heart rate variability. RESULTS: In contrast to nearly normal perfusions, mean (SD) HED retention in dilated cardiomyopathy patients was abnormal in 64 (32)% of the left ventricle. Absolute myocardial HED retention was 10.7 (1.0)%/min in controls v 6.2 (1.6)%/min in dilated cardiomyopathy patients (p < 0.001). Moreover, significant regional reduction of HED retention was demonstrated in apical and inferoapical segments. HED retention was significantly correlated with New York Heart Association functional class (r = -0.55, p = 0. 002) and ejection fraction (r = 0.63, p < 0.001), but not, however, with plasma noradrenaline concentrations as well as parameters of heart rate variability. CONCLUSIONS: In this study, using PET in combination with HED in patients with dilated cardiomyopathy, not only global reduction but also regional abnormalities of cardiac sympathetic tracer uptake were demonstrated. The degree of abnormality was positively correlated to markers of severity of heart failure. The pathogenetic mechanisms leading to the regional differences of neuronal damage as well as the prognostic significance of these findings remain to be defined.  (+info)

(2/6913) 3D angiography. Clinical interest. First applications in interventional neuroradiology.

3D angiography is a true technical revolution that allows improvement in the quality and safety of diagnostic and endovascular treatment procedures. 3D angiography images are obtained by reconstruction of a rotational angiography acquisition done on a C-arm (GE Medical Systems) spinning at 40 degrees per second. The carotid or vertebral selective injection of a total of 15 ml of non-ionic contrast media at 3 ml/sec over 5 seconds allows the selection of the "arterial phase". Four hundred sixty 3D angiographic studies were performed from December 1996 to September 1998 on 260 patients and have been analyzed in MIP (Maximum Intensity Projection) and SSD (Shaded Surface Display) views. The exploration of intracranial aneurysms is simplified and only requires, for each vascular axis, a biplane PA and Lateral run followed by a single rotational angiography run. The 3D angiography image is available on the workstation's screen (Advantage Workstation 3.1, GE Medical Systems) in less than 10 minutes after the acquisition of the rotational run. It therefore allows one to analyze, during the intervention, the aneurysm's angioarchitecture, in particular the neck, and select the best therapeutic technique. When endovascular treatment is the best indication, 3D angiography allows one to define the optimal angle of view and accurately select the microcoils dimensions. 3D angiography replaces the multiple oblique views that used to be required to analyze the complex aneurysms and therefore allows a reduction of the total contrast medium quantity, the patient X-ray dose and the length of the intervention time which is a safety factor. Also, in particular for complex cases, it brings additional elements complementing the results of standard 2D DSA and rotational angiograms. In the cervical vascular pathology, 3D angiography allows for a better assessment of the stenosis level and of dissection lesions. Our current research activities focus on the matching without stereotactic frame between 3D X-ray angiography and volumetric MR acquisition, which should allow us to improve the treatment of intracerebral arterio-venous malformations (AVMs).  (+info)

(3/6913) 3D MRI of the membranous labyrinth. An age related comparison of MR findings in patients with labyrinthine fibrosis and in persons without inner ear symptoms.

PURPOSE: We compared MRI of the membranous labyrinth in patients with chronic non-neoplastic inner ear disease and MR signs of labyrinthine fibrosis and controls depending on their age, in order to establish whether there were any MR differences regarding patient age groups, control age groups and between the patients and controls themselves. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Clinical ENT examinations as well as a T2* weighted 3D CISS (Constructive Interference in Steady State) sequence with a slice thickness of 0.7 mm were performed. Our collective was subdivided as follows: 0-19 years (10 controls, 3 patients with chronic non-neoplastic inner ear disease), 20-49 years (55 controls, 8 patients), 50 years and older (40 controls, 22 patients). Detectability of labyrinthine structures (e.g. cochlea, vestibule, semicircular canals) and filling defects were evaluated. RESULTS: In the 3 age-groups of the control collective no significant differences were observed in the membranous labyrinth. However differences concerning labyrinthine detectability emerged between controls and patients in both the 20-49 years and 50 years and older age groups. In the patient collective the 3 age groups showed no significant discrepancy in the mean number of lesions. CONCLUSION: Filling defects of the membranous labyrinth on 3D CISS MR images are pathological even in older persons. We would therefore recommend high resolution T2* weighted MRI in the case of suspected labyrinthine fibrosis.  (+info)

(4/6913) Angiographical extravasation of contrast medium in hemorrhagic infarction. Case report.

Leakage of the contrast medium was noted on angiograms of a patient whose autopsied brain disclosed typical pathological findings of hemorrhagic infarction. The case was a 63-year old woman with mitral valve failure, who suddenly had loss of consciousness and right-sided hemiplegia. The left carotid angiography performed six hours after onset demonstrated middle cerebral arterial axis occlusion, and the second angiography performed three days after onset displayed recanalization of the initially occluded artery as well as extravasation of the contrast medium. Fourteen days after onset the patient died and an autopsy was performed. The brain demonstrated perivascular punctate hemorrhages in the area supplied by the middle cerebral artery, and neither hematoma nor microaneurysm was disclosed pathologically. A short discussion is given on the possible relationship between recanalization and hemorrhagic infarction. The clinical assessment of hemorrhagic infarction has not been established successfully.  (+info)

(5/6913) Comparative cytotoxicity of ionic and non-ionic radiocontrast agents on MDCK cell monolayers in vitro.

BACKGROUND: Intravascular radiocontrast agents may cause acute renal failure, particularly in patients with pre-existing renal insufficiency. Direct cytotoxic effects of radiocontrast agents on renal tubular cells may contribute to the pathogenesis of radiocontrast-induced nephropathy. METHODS: We analysed the cytotoxicity of the ionic radiocontrast agents diatrizoate (monomeric) and ioxaglate (dimeric), as well as of the non-ionic radiocontrast agents iohexol (monomeric) and iodixanol (dimeric) on the renal epithelial Madin Darby Canine Kidney (MDCK) cell line grown on permeable supports. The toxicity assays assessed cell viability, transmonolayer resistance and inulin permeability between the apical and basal cell culture compartment. In addition, the distribution of the tight-junction-associated membrane proteins ZO-1 and occludin was analysed using immunofluorescence microscopy. RESULTS: In all assays the high osmolal ionic compound diatrizoate had significant cytotoxic effects that included the partial redistribution of the tight-junction-associated membrane proteins into a cytoplasmic compartment. To a lesser extent this redistribution also occurred with the dimeric ionic compound ioxaglate, but not with the non-ionic radiocontrast agents. With regards to cell viability, transmonolayer resistance and inulin permeability the radiocontrast agents with reduced osmolality were significantly less toxic than diatrizoate, independent of their ionic strength. CONCLUSIONS: Physicochemical factors contribute to the cytotoxicity of radiocontrast agents in vitro. The redistribution of tight-junction-associated membrane proteins by the ionic radiocontrast agents corresponds with the loss of the barrier function of the epithelial cell monolayer, which is a major pathophysiological mechanism in acute renal failure. The radiocontrast agents with reduced osmolality are less cytotoxic than diatrizoate, independent of their ionicity. Hyperosmolality appears to be a more important determinant of the cytotoxicity of diatrizoate than ionic strength.  (+info)

(6/6913) Enhancement of endocytosis due to aminophospholipid transport across the plasma membrane of living cells.

Formation of intracellular vesicles is initiated by membrane budding. Here we test the hypothesis that the plasma membrane surface area asymmetry could be a driving force for vesicle formation during endocytosis. The inner layer phospholipid number was therefore increased by adding exogenous aminophospholipids to living cells, which were then translocated from the outer to the inner layer of the membrane by the ubiquitous flippase. Addition of either phosphatidylserine or phosphatidylethanolamine led to an enhancement of endocytosis, showing that the observed acceleration does not depend on the lipid polar head group. Conversely, a closely related aminophospholipid that is not recognized by the flippase, lyso-alpha-phosphatidylserine, inhibited endocytosis, and similar results were obtained with a cholesterol derivative that also remains in the plasma membrane outer layer. Thus an increase of lipid concentration in the inner layer enhanced internalization, whereas an increase of the lipid concentration in the outer layer inhibited internalization. These experiments suggest that transient asymmetries in lipid concentration might contribute to the formation of endocytic vesicles.  (+info)

(7/6913) Thorotrast associated nodular regenerative hyperplasia of the liver.

A case of nodular regenerative hyperplasia (NRH) of the liver is described in association with exposure to the radiographic contrast medium Thorotrast. This is the first case in which the pathological findings have been fully documented. It is suggested that NRH may have developed through Thorotrast induced damage to portal vein radicles.  (+info)

(8/6913) Intravaginal saline as a contrast agent for cervical sonography in the obstetric patient.

OBJECTIVE: To determine whether intravaginal saline alters visualization of the cervix during endovaginal sonographic examinations. DESIGN: A prospective trial with comparison of sonographic measurements of cervical length prior to and after administration of an intravaginal contrast agent. SUBJECTS: Patients with an indication for endovaginal ultrasonographic assessment of the cervix were considered as candidates for the study. METHODS: After assessment of cervical dimensions and contour of the internal cervical os, 10 ml of normal saline was placed intravaginally via a needleless syringe. Pre- and post-contrast sonographic examinations of the cervix were compared. RESULTS: Twenty-six patients were enrolled. No differences were observed in the identification of funnelling (37% in each group, p = 1.0) or the quantification of cervical length for the entire cohort (p = 0.95). However, in a subset of patients in whom the external os was not satisfactorily visualized (23%), intravaginal contrast resulted in a mean difference in cervical length pre- and post-saline infusion of 6.4 mm compared to 1.4 mm in patients in whom the external os could be easily identified (p < 0.001). No patient expressed undue discomfort related to the administration of contrast. CONCLUSION: Intravaginal saline assists in visualization of the cervix during endovaginal sonography for selected patients in whom precise identification of the external os is difficult.  (+info)