Coronary CT Angiographic and Flow Reserve-Guided Management of Patients With Stable Ischemic Heart Disease

Bjarne L Nørgaard, Christian J Terkelsen, Ole N Mathiassen, Erik L Grove, Hans Erik Bøtker, Erik Parner, Jonathon Leipsic, Flemming H Steffensen, Anders H Riis, Kamilla Pedersen, Evald H Christiansen, Michael Mæng, Lars R Krusell, Steen D Kristensen, Ashkan Eftekhari, Lars Jakobsen, Jesper M Jensen

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Background: Clinical outcomes following coronary computed tomography–derived fractional flow reserve (FFR CT) testing in clinical practice are unknown. Objectives: This study sought to assess real-world clinical outcomes following a diagnostic strategy including first-line coronary computed tomography angiography (CTA) with selective FFR CT testing. Methods: The study reviewed the results of 3,674 consecutive patients with stable chest pain evaluated with CTA and FFR CT testing to guide downstream management in patients with intermediate stenosis (30% to 70%). The composite endpoint (all-cause death, myocardial infarction, hospitalization for unstable angina, and unplanned revascularization) was determined in 4 patient groups: 1) CTA stenosis <30%, optimal medical treatment (OMT), and no additional testing; 2) FFR CT >0.80, OMT, no additional testing; 3) FFR CT ≤0.80, OMT, no additional testing; and 4) FFR CT ≤0.80, OMT, and referral to invasive coronary angiography. Patients were followed for a median of 24 (range 8 to 41) months. Results: FFR CT was available in 677 patients, and the test result was negative (>0.80) in 410 (61%) patients. In 75% of the patients with FFR CT >0.80, maximum coronary stenosis was ≥50%. The cumulative incidence proportion (95% confidence interval [CI]) of the composite endpoint at the end of follow-up was comparable in groups 1 (2.8%; 95% CI: 1.4% to 4.9%) and 2 (3.9%; 95% CI: 2.0% to 6.9%) (p = 0.58) but was higher (when compared with group 1) in groups 3 (9.4%; p = 0.04) and 4 (6.6%; p = 0.08). Risk of myocardial infarction was lower in group 4 (1.3%) than in group 3 (8%; p < 0.001). Conclusions: In patients with intermediate-range coronary stenosis, FFR CT is effective in differentiating patients who do not require further diagnostic testing or intervention (FFR CT >0.80) from higher-risk patients (FFR CT ≤0.80) in whom further testing with invasive coronary angiography and possibly intervention may be needed. Further studies assessing the risk and optimal management strategy in patients undergoing first-line CTA with selective FFR CT testing are needed.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of the American College of Cardiology
Pages (from-to)2123-2134
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - 30 Oct 2018


  • computed tomography angiography
  • coronary angiography
  • coronary artery disease
  • fractional flow reserve


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