Comparison of visual assessment and computer image analysis of intercoronary thrombus type by optical coherence tomography in clinical patients

Author(s): Timo P Kaivosoja*, Shengnan Liu, Jouke Dijkstra, Jouke Dijkstra, Tej Sheth and Olli A Kajander

Objectives: Analysis of intracoronary thrombus type by optical coherence tomography (OCT) imaging is highly subjective. We aimed to compare a newly developed image analysis method to subjective visual classification of thrombus type identified by OCT.

Methods: Thirty patients with acute ST elevation myocardial infarction were included. Thrombus type visually classified by two independent readers was compared with analysis using QCU-CMS software.

Results: Repeatability of the computer-based measurements was good. By using a ROC, area under curve values for discrimination of white and red thrombi were 0.92 (95% confidence intervals (CI) 0.83-1.00) for median attenuation, 0.96 (95% CI 0.89-1.00) for mean backscatter and 0.96 (95% CI 0.89-1.00) for mean grayscale intensity. Median attenuation of 0.57 mm-1 (sensitivity 100%, specificity 71%), mean backscatter of 5.35 (sensitivity 92%, specificity 94%) and mean grayscale intensity of 120.1 (sensitivity 85%, specificity 100%) were identified as the best cut-off values to differentiate between red and white thrombi.

Conclusions: Attenuation, backscatter and grayscale intensity of thrombi in OCT images differentiated red and white thrombi with high sensitivity and specificity. Measurement of these continuous parameters can be used as a less user-dependent method to characterize in vivo thrombi. The clinical significance of these findings needs to be tested in further studies.

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