AJR. American journal of roentgenology

Evaluation of imaging quality of pulmonary 64-MDCT angiography in pregnancy and puerperium.

PMID 24370129


The aim of this study was to quantitatively and qualitatively evaluate pulmonary 64-MDCT angiography image quality in pregnancy and puerperium, compared with female nonpregnant control subjects. The study group comprised 124 consecutive pregnant and postpartum women and 124 female nonpregnant control subjects who presented with suspected pulmonary embolism. The individual studies were evaluated for subjective and objective diagnostic quality. Objective measurements of the arterial enhancement in the pulmonary trunk and left and right pulmonary arteries found that there was no statistically significant difference in attenuation values between the pregnant and puerperium group and the control group for pulmonary artery opacification. The mean attenuation in the pulmonary trunk was 270.54 HU in the pregnant group, 277.53 HU in the puerperium group, and 293.90 HU in the control group. We found no significant difference in diagnostic quality of pulmonary CT angiography using MDCT between the study and control groups. The use of MDCT acquisition, faster injection rates, higher contrast medium concentration, and higher trigger levels may decrease the number of nondiagnostic studies in this population. MDCT may be a worthwhile investigation in the majority of pregnant patients with suspected pulmonary embolism.