What Is Cardiac
Cardiac perfusion imaging is a medical
test that uses a radioactive substance, known as a tracer,
to assess the flow of blood to the heart muscle.
Generally, cardiac perfusion imaging
is done after an exercise/treadmill stress test. For
patients who are unable to exercise adequately,
it may be done after injection of a drug that mimics
the effect of exercise on the heart. This is known
as a pharmacologic stress test.
The drug most commonly used for pharmacologic
stress testing is dipyridamole (Persantine®).
Another drug is adenosine (Adenocard®).
(Other terms often used to describe
cardiac perfusion imaging include: myocardial perfusion
scan, cardiac nuclear imaging, and radionuclide stress
test. Based on the specific tracer that's used, it may
also be called Thallium, Cardiolite, or Myoview scan.)