Diagnosis of pulmonary hypertension with cardiac MRI: Derivation and validation of regression models

Christopher S. Johns, David G. Kiely, Smitha Rajaram, Catherine Hill, Steven Thomas, Kavitasagary Karunasaagarar, Pankaj Garg, Neil Hamilton, Roshni Solanki, David A. Capener, Charles Elliot, Ian Sabroe, Athanasios Charalamopopoulos, Robin Condliffe, James M. Wild, Andrew J. Swift

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Purpose: To derive and test multiparametric cardiac MRI models for the diagnosis of pulmonary hypertension (PH).

Materials and Methods: Images and patient data from consecutive patients suspected of having PH who underwent cardiac MRI and right-sided heart catheterization (RHC) between 2012 and 2016 were retrospectively reviewed. Of 2437 MR images identified, 603 fit the inclusion criteria. The mean patient age was 61 years (range, 18–88 years; mean age of women, 60 years [range, 18–84 years]; mean age of men, 62 years [range, 22–88 years]). In the first 300 patients (derivation cohort), cardiac MRI metrics that showed correlation with mean pulmonary arterial pressure (mPAP) were used to create a regression algorithm. The performance of the model was assessed in the 303-patient validation cohort by using receiver operating characteristic (ROC) and χ2 analysis.

Results: In the derivation cohort, cardiac MRI mPAP model 1 (right ventricle and black blood) was defined as follows: −179 + loge interventricular septal angle × 42.7 + log10 ventricular mass index (right ventricular mass/left ventricular mass) × 7.57 + black blood slow flow score × 3.39. In the validation cohort, cardiac MRI mPAP model 1 had strong agreement with RHC-measured mPAP, an intraclass coefficient of 0.78, and high diagnostic accuracy (area under the ROC curve = 0.95; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.93, 0.98). The threshold of at least 25 mm Hg had a sensitivity of 93% (95% CI: 89%, 96%), specificity of 79% (95% CI: 65%, 89%), positive predictive value of 96% (95% CI: 93%, 98%), and negative predictive value of 67% (95% CI: 53%, 78%) in the validation cohort. A second model, cardiac MRI mPAP model 2 (right ventricle pulmonary artery), which excludes the black blood flow score, had equivalent diagnostic accuracy (ROC difference: P = .24).

Conclusion: Multiparametric cardiac MRI models have high diagnostic accuracy in patients suspected of having pulmonary hypertension.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)61-68
Number of pages8
Issue number1
Early online date23 Oct 2018
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2019

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