The purpose of this study was to determine the prevalence and clinical importance of incidental findings of noncoronary cardiac structures and mediastinal great vessels in patients who underwent coronary computed tomography angiography (CCTA).
The study included 2,096 consecutive patients (1,472 men and 624 women, with a mean age of 55 years). Cardiovascular findings were categorized into three groups according to the clinical importance: group 1 included findings necessitating immediate treatment or intervention; group 2 included findings requiring clinical awareness, follow-up, or further clinical and/or radiological investigations; and group 3 included findings not requiring any follow-up or further tests. We also evaluated whether there was any previous diagnosis of cardiovascular findings.
A total of 174 abnormalities (8.3 %) were detected in 170 patients. Of these abnormalities, 21 findings (12 %) were considered as group 1, 121 (69.5 %) as group 2, and 32 (18.5 %) as group 3. The majority of cardiovascular findings (140 of 174, 80.5 %) were unknown by the reporter during the interpretation of CCTA examinations and regarded as incidental findings.
Noncoronary incidental cardiovascular findings in patients who underwent CCTA are common. It is important to be aware of these findings necessitating immediate treatment or intervention, and follow-up or further investigations, and careful attention must be paid to all the structures included in the images.