PET/MR shows arterial CO2 as potent vasodilator for cardiac stress testing

June 5, 2017

PET/MR shows arterial CO2 as potent vasodilator for cardiac stress testing -- ScienceDaily

More than 5 million cardiac stress tests performed annually in the U.S. employ injectable forms of pharmacological stress agents -- such as adenosine or one of its analogues -- to dilate blood vessels in the heart. However, these drugs can have severe side effects. Using PET/MR imaging, a new international study featured in the June issue of The Journal of Nuclear Medicine demonstrates that increases in partial pressure of arterial carbon dioxide (PaCO2) can safely and efficiently widen blood vessels of the heart during stress tests to help determine heart function.