PCI Heartscan® relies on the findings of 25 years of research and over 80,000 subjects to determine both stroke risk and heart attack risk. Our own database includes over 60,000 studies, many of which are the same patient over time.
Common Carotid Artery Intimial-Medial Thickening (CIMT) measurement is a non-invasive procedure to detect atherosclerosis and early stages of arterial damage due to cardiovascular disease in populations from 8 to 80 years old.
Methodology (the equipment, the scanning process, and the analysis process) has been developed according to major research studies such as the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities Study (ARIC), Bogalusa Heart Study, Muscatine Study, Asymptomatic Carotid Artery Plaque Study (ACAPS), and has evolved through actual clinical practice. PCI Heartscan® specifically follows the protocol used in the ARIC study which was determined to produce the most accurate and reproducible results.
Results from the scans are presented in a report showing current results and comparing to results of previous studies. The comparison makes the report a "trend" tool that helps determine the effectiveness of treatment. Reports have a section directed to the patient to better motivate the patient to be compliant with treatment recommendations.
The procedure requires trained ultrasonographers who use FDA approved portable ultrasound machines to acquire images of the patient's left and right carotid arteries. In B-mode, a linear array transducer is used to acquire the images. The images are transferred to IMD offices where measurement of images is performed by certified technicians using semi-automated ultrasound image processing programs. This is the same software used in medical research.
The computer programs analyze the arterial walls to determine whether there are any blockages in the artery and determine if there is abnormal thickening of the artery wall. Abnormal thickening is an indication of heart disease. The analysis is sensitive enough to be repeated in six months and changes of a 1/100 of millimeter can be detected. PCI Heartscan® therefore can detect cardiovascular disease in its earliest stages and can monitor the progression or regression of disease over time.