Cardiothoracic Imaging: Recent Techniques and Applications in Diagnostics, Second Edition

A special issue of Diagnostics (ISSN 2075-4418). This special issue belongs to the section "Medical Imaging and Theranostics".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 March 2024 | Viewed by 4161

Special Issue Editor

Department of Radiology, Monaldi Hospital, Azienda Ospedaliera dei Colli, 80131 Naples, Italy
Interests: thoracic imaging; cardiac imaging; interstitial lung disease; vascular imaging
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Cardiothoracic imaging has always attracted enormous interest not only among radiologists but also among clinicians, due to the technological innovations applied to cardiothoracic imaging. In fact, recent technological progress has allowed a significant increase in the diagnostic accuracy of cardiothoracic imaging methods, unthinkable until a few years ago. New CT and MR scanners have reached such high levels of technology and performance as to revolutionize diagnostic imaging of the heart, lungs, and large and small vessels in elective and emergency setting. New CT scanners with clear dose savings and time-saving technology are becoming safer and allow more accurate diagnosis in emergencies by directing clinicians towards the most appropriate therapeutic management, while the latest generation of MR scanners and new postprocessing software make cardiac MRI an increasingly one-stop-shop method in many heart diseases.

Finally, it is necessary to mention how artificial intelligence, radiomics, and deep learning have also become a hot topic in chest imaging, e.g., in lung cancer, pneumonia, or diffuse pulmonary disease.

Therefore, the aim of this Special Issue is to show how new technology applied to radiology can improve imaging diagnostic accuracy in more frequent, often life-threatening, but also less common cardiothoracic diseases.

Dr. Giacomo Sica
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • emergency
  • cardiac imaging
  • thoracic imaging
  • aorta
  • MRI
  • CT
  • radiomics
  • artificial intelligence
  • ILD

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

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15 pages, 3732 KiB  
Article
Mesenchymal Stem Cell Transplantation Has a Regenerative Effect in Ischemic Myocardium: An Experimental Rat Model Evaluated by SPECT-CT Assessment
Diagnostics 2024, 14(4), 401; https://doi.org/10.3390/diagnostics14040401 - 12 Feb 2024
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Abstract
Translational perspective: Ischemic heart disease remains a major medical problem with high mortality rates. Beside the great efforts devoted to research worldwide and the use of numerous experimental models, an absolute understanding of myocardial infarction and tissue loss has not yet been achieved. [...] Read more.
Translational perspective: Ischemic heart disease remains a major medical problem with high mortality rates. Beside the great efforts devoted to research worldwide and the use of numerous experimental models, an absolute understanding of myocardial infarction and tissue loss has not yet been achieved. Furthermore, the regeneration of myocardial tissue and the improvement of myocardial activity after ischemia is one of the major areas of interest in the medical (and especially cardiovascular) community. In a novel experimental rat model, the beneficial effect of mesenchymal stem cell transplantation (MSCT) in a surgically induced ischemic myocardium was documented. From a clinical perspective, this work supports the surgical administration of MSCT in the infarcted area during coronary artery bypass surgery. Aims: The regeneration of myocardial tissue and the improvement of myocardial activity after ischemia is one of the major areas of interest in cardiovascular research. We developed a novel experimental rat model and used it to examine the effect of mesenchymal stem cell transplantation (MSCT) on myocardial ischemia evaluated by SPECT-CT and immunohistochemistry. Methods and results: An open thoracotomy took place for forty adult female Wistar rats with (n = 30) or without (n = 10) surgical ligation of the left anterior descending coronary artery (LAD) in order to cause myocardial ischemia. Myocardial viability was evaluated via SPECT/CT 7 days before surgery, as well as at 7 and 14 days post-surgery. At day 0, 15 animals received homologous stem cells injected at the ischemic myocardium area. A SPECT/CT evaluation showed decreased activity of the myocardial cells in the left ventricle one week post-infarction. Regeneration of the ischemic myocardium fifteen days post-infarction was recorded only in animals subjected to stem cell transplantation. These findings were also confirmed by histology and immunohistochemical analysis, with the significantly higher expression of GATA4 and Nkx2.5. Conclusions: The positive effect of mesenchymal stem cell transplantation in the ischemic myocardium was recorded. The application of SPECT-CT allowed a clear evaluation of both the quality and quantity of the living myocardium post-infarction, leading to a new approach in the research of cardiovascular diseases. From a clinical perspective, MSCT may be beneficial when accompanied by myocardial revascularization procedures. Full article
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Review

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19 pages, 1162 KiB  
Review
Artificial Intelligence in the Differential Diagnosis of Cardiomyopathy Phenotypes
Diagnostics 2024, 14(2), 156; https://doi.org/10.3390/diagnostics14020156 - 10 Jan 2024
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Abstract
Artificial intelligence (AI) is rapidly being applied to the medical field, especially in the cardiovascular domain. AI approaches have demonstrated their applicability in the detection, diagnosis, and management of several cardiovascular diseases, enhancing disease stratification and typing. Cardiomyopathies are a leading cause of [...] Read more.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is rapidly being applied to the medical field, especially in the cardiovascular domain. AI approaches have demonstrated their applicability in the detection, diagnosis, and management of several cardiovascular diseases, enhancing disease stratification and typing. Cardiomyopathies are a leading cause of heart failure and life-threatening ventricular arrhythmias. Identifying the etiologies is fundamental for the management and diagnostic pathway of these heart muscle diseases, requiring the integration of various data, including personal and family history, clinical examination, electrocardiography, and laboratory investigations, as well as multimodality imaging, making the clinical diagnosis challenging. In this scenario, AI has demonstrated its capability to capture subtle connections from a multitude of multiparametric datasets, enabling the discovery of hidden relationships in data and handling more complex tasks than traditional methods. This review aims to present a comprehensive overview of the main concepts related to AI and its subset. Additionally, we review the existing literature on AI-based models in the differential diagnosis of cardiomyopathy phenotypes, and we finally examine the advantages and limitations of these AI approaches. Full article
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25 pages, 1234 KiB  
Review
Non-Contrast and Contrast-Enhanced Cardiac Computed Tomography Imaging in the Diagnostic and Prognostic Evaluation of Coronary Artery Disease
Diagnostics 2023, 13(12), 2074; https://doi.org/10.3390/diagnostics13122074 - 15 Jun 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2747
Abstract
In recent decades, cardiac computed tomography (CT) has emerged as a powerful non-invasive tool for risk stratification, as well as the detection and characterization of coronary artery disease (CAD), which remains the main cause of morbidity and mortality in the world. Advances in [...] Read more.
In recent decades, cardiac computed tomography (CT) has emerged as a powerful non-invasive tool for risk stratification, as well as the detection and characterization of coronary artery disease (CAD), which remains the main cause of morbidity and mortality in the world. Advances in technology have favored the increasing use of cardiac CT by allowing better performance with lower radiation doses. Coronary artery calcium, as assessed by non-contrast CT, is considered to be the best marker of subclinical atherosclerosis, and its use is recommended for the refinement of risk assessment in low-to-intermediate risk individuals. In addition, coronary CT angiography (CCTA) has become a gate-keeper to invasive coronary angiography (ICA) and revascularization in patients with acute chest pain by allowing the assessment not only of the extent of lumen stenosis, but also of its hemodynamic significance if combined with the measurement of fractional flow reserve or perfusion imaging. Moreover, CCTA provides a unique incremental value over functional testing and ICA by imaging the vessel wall, thus allowing the assessment of plaque burden, composition, and instability features, in addition to perivascular adipose tissue attenuation, which is a marker of vascular inflammation. There exists the potential to identify the non-obstructive lesions at high risk of progression to plaque rupture by combining all of these measures. Full article
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