Coronary CT angiography using low concentrated contrast media injected with high flow rates: Feasible in clinical practice

Casper Mihl*, Madeleine Kok, Joachim E. Wildberger, Sibel Altintas, David Labus, Estelle C. Nijssen, Babs M. F. Hendriks, Bas L. J. H. Kietselaer, Marco Das

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Purpose: Aim of this study was to test the hypothesis that peak injection pressures and image quality using low concentrated contrast media (CM) (240 mg/mL) injected with high flow rates will be comparable to a standard injection protocol (CM: 300 mg/mL) in coronary computed tomographic angiography (CCTA). Material and methods: One hundred consecutive patients were scanned on a 2nd generation dual-source CT scanner. Group 1 (n= 50) received prewarmed Iopromide 240 mg/mL at an injection rate of 9 mL/s, followed by a saline chaser. Group 2 (n = 50) received the standard injection protocol: prewarmed Iopromide 300 mg/mL; flow rate: 7.2 mL/s. For both protocols, the iodine delivery rate (IDR, 2.16 gI/s) and the total iodine load (22.5 gI) were kept identical. Injection pressure (psi) was continuously monitored by a data acquisition program. Contrast enhancement was measured in the thoracic aorta and all proximal and distal coronary segments. Subjective and objective image quality was evaluated between both groups. Results: No significant differences in peak injection pressures were found between both CM groups (121 + 5.6 psi vs. 120 + 5.3 psi, p = 0.54). Flow rates of 9 mL/s were safely injected without any complications. No significant differences in contrast-to-noise ratio, signal-to-noise ratio and subjective image quality were found (all p >0.05). No significant differences in attenuation levels were found in the thoracic aorta and all segments of the coronary arteries (all p >0.05). Conclusion: Usage of low iodine concentration CM and injection with high flow rates is feasible. High flow rates (9 mL/s) of Iopromide 240 were safely injected without complications and should not be considered a drawback in clinical practice. No significant differences in peak pressure and image quality were found. This creates a doorway towards applicability of a broad variety in flow rates and IDRs and subsequently more individually tailored injection protocols.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2155-2160
JournalEuropean Journal of Radiology
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2015


  • Diagnostic imaging
  • Cardiac imaging technique
  • Contrast media
  • Computed tomography
  • Flow injection analysis

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