CT and MR Imaging of Cardiothoracic Vasculitis.
Radiographics. 2018 Jul-Aug;38(4):997-1021. doi: 10.1148/rg.2018170136. Epub 2018 Jun 8. Broncano J1, Vargas D1, Bhalla S1, Cummings KW1, Raptis CA1, Luna A1.
The term vasculitis includes a variable group of entities in which the common characteristic is inflammation of the walls of blood vessels occurring at some time during the course of the disease. The vasculitides can be divided into primary and secondary vasculitides, depending on the etiology and according to the size of the vessel affected. Both primary vasculitis and secondary vasculitis are associated with cardiac morbidity that is often subclinical. Cardiac involvement is associated with prognostic implications and higher rates of related mortality. Vasculitis of cardiac structures and the assessment of disease extent are important for appropriate management and selection of treatment. Although echocardiography, radionuclide imaging, and catheter-directed coronary angiography remain the cornerstones of cardiac imaging, cardiac computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging can offer a 360° assessment of cardiac anatomy, function, and complications secondary to vasculitis. Postoperative complications, which are more frequent in patients with active disease, can also be depicted with those imaging modalities. A multidisciplinary approach is important to yield an appropriate estimate of the disease activity and extent and, therefore, to enable better treatment selection and monitoring. Online supplemental material is available for this article. ©RSNA, 2018.