Texture analysis of SPECT myocardial perfusion provides prognostic value for dilated cardiomyopathy

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Department of Applied Computing


Background: Texture analysis (TA) has demonstrated clinical values in extracting information, quantifying inhomogeneity, evaluating treatment outcomes, and predicting long-term prognosis for cardiac diseases. The aim of this study was to explore whether TA of SPECT myocardial perfusion could contribute to improving the prognosis of dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) patients. Methods: Eighty-eight patients were recruited in our study between 2009 and 2020 who were diagnosed with DCM and underwent single-photon emission tomography myocardial perfusion imaging (SPECT MPI). Forty TA features were obtained from quantitative analysis of SPECT imaging in subjects with myocardial perfusion at rest. All patients were divided into two groups: the all-cause death group and the survival group. The prognostic value of texture parameters was assessed by Cox regression and Kaplan–Meier analysis. Results: Twenty-five all-cause deaths (28.4%) were observed during the follow-up (39.2±28.7 months). Compared with the survival group, NT-proBNP and total perfusion deficit (TPD) were higher and left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) was lower in the all-cause death group. In addition, 26 out of 40 texture parameters were significantly different between the two groups. Univariate Cox regression analysis revealed that NT-proBNP, LVEF, and 25 texture parameters were significantly associated with all-cause death. The multivariate Cox regression analysis showed that low gray-level emphasis (LGLE) (P = 0.010, HR = 4.698, 95% CI 1.457–15.145) and long-run low gray-level emphasis (LRLGE) (P =0.002, HR = 6.085, 95% CI 1.906–19.422) were independent predictors of the survival outcome. When added to clinical parameters, LVEF, TPD, and TA parameters, including LGLE and LRLGE, were incrementally associated with all-cause death (global chi-square statistic of 26.246 vs. 33.521; P = 0.028, global chi-square statistic of 26.246 vs. 34.711; P = 0.004). Conclusion: TA based on gated SPECT MPI could discover independent prognostic predictors of all-cause death in medically treated patients with DCM. Moreover, TA parameters, including LGLE and LRLGE, independent of the total perfusion deficit of the cardiac myocardium, appeared to provide incremental prognostic value for DCM patients.

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Journal of Nuclear Cardiology