How can we diagnose coronary heart disease in hypertensive patients?
Chest pain is a common complaint among hypertensive patients. Hypertension and coronary heart disease each may present with symptoms and signs that are clinically indistinguishable. Noninvasive testing by routine exercise stress testing and stress radionuclide angiography are not reliably predictive of ischemia resulting from obstructive epicardial coronary artery disease and should be abandoned for that diagnostic purpose. Noninvasive thallium-201 myocardial perfusion imaging for this purpose may prove to be a valuable tool, avoiding the risk and expense of coronary arteriography. However, carefully performed prospective studies are not available. Because of the high prevalence of both diseases, a high priority must be given to obtaining these data and evaluating other noninvasive methods (especially positron emission tomography) if they appear promising.
- Copyright © 1987 by American Heart Association