The Cardiovascular Imaging Center of Wake Forest Baptist is an international leader in cardiovascular CT, MRI and ultrasound, combining the expertise of our cardiologists and radiologists to detect and diagnose heart disease more accurately with clearer images of the heart across the entire spectrum of cardiac imaging.
The use of cardiac imaging technology at Wake Forest Baptist is a valuable tool in the search for more accurate, less costly ways to diagnose patients who come to the Emergency Department with chest pain.
Emergency Medicine Assistant Professor Chad Miller, MD, led a team of Wake Forest Baptist researchers who found that administering stress cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans to select chest pain patients in the ED helps identify which patients do not need to be admitted for observation and more invasive diagnostic testing.
Currently, about half of chest pain patients who are considered to be at intermediate risk of a heart attack are admitted, but only a small percentage of them experience a serious cardiac event. The Wake Forest Baptist team found that the use of cardiac MRI scans in an observation area within the ED made it possible to manage the care of 79 percent of these patients without admitting them.
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is funding our PREDICT study of people with either high blood pressure and/or diabetes and/or coronary artery disease. The study uses cMRI to look at the heart function during an IV infusion cardiac stress test to evaluate the risks of developing congestive heart failure or fluid in the lungs.
The NIH and the Susan G. Komen Foundation are funding the DETECT study which uses cMRI for early detection of chemotherapy-associated cardiotoxicity in women with breast cancer.
Cardiac imaging has a number of studies focused on diastolic heart failure. Current research through the SECRET study examines the effects of weight loss via hypocaloric diet, aerobic exercise training, and attention control in patients with heart failure and a normal ejection fraction and body mass index greater than or equal to 30.
Wake Forest Baptist researchers received a $1.5 million NIH grant to explore an association between pericardial fat and the development of coronary heart disease (CHD) by examining data from the Multi-ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) involving 6,500 people from across the country, including 1,000 locally. The MESA study used CT, ultrasound and MRI to screen men and women for heart disease.