Diagnosis of Atherosclerosis by Imaging

Borja Ibañez, Juan J. Badimon, Mario J. Garcia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations


New and experimental imaging techniques are being developed that will permit better visualization and compositional characterization of atheromatous plaques. This review provides discussion of techniques that are currently used in clinical practice, as well as techniques that are investigational only, including coronary angiography, intravascular ultrasound, computed tomography, magnetic resonance imaging, positron emission tomography, and single-photon emission computed tomography. Types of atheromatous plaque are reviewed, and the value of examining vascular calcification in risk assessment is discussed. Experimental use of these imaging techniques in animal models and in clinical studies will enhance our understanding of the development of plaque and will determine whether these techniques would be useful and practical for predicting disease course. Early detection and identification of the type of plaque that is present may generate novel opportunities for primary prevention through changes in lifestyle or even through drug therapy, especially in patients at high cardiovascular risk.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)S15-S25
JournalAmerican Journal of Medicine
Issue number1 SUPPL.
StatePublished - Jan 2009


  • Atherosclerosis
  • Cardiac magnetic resonance
  • Computed tomography
  • Vascular ultrasound

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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