Background: A variety of temporal sampling protocols is used worldwide to measure myocardial blood flow (MBF). Both the length and number of time frames in these protocols may alter MBF and myocardial flow reserve (MFR) measurements. We aimed to assess the effect of different clinically used temporal sampling protocols on MBF and MFR quantification in Rubidium-82 (Rb-82) PET imaging. Methods: We retrospectively included 20 patients referred for myocardial perfusion imaging using Rb-82 PET. A literature search was performed to identify appropriate sampling protocols. PET data were reconstructed using 14 selected temporal sampling protocols with time frames of 5-10 seconds in the first-pass phase and 30-120 seconds in the tissue phase. Rest and stress MBF and MFR were calculated for all protocols and compared to the reference protocol with 26 time frames. Results: MBF measurements differed (P ≤ 0.003) in six (43%) protocols in comparison to the reference protocol, with mean absolute relative differences up to 16% (range 5%-31%). Statistically significant differences were most frequently found for protocols with tissue phase time frames < 90 seconds. MFR did not differ (P ≥ 0.11) for any of the protocols. Conclusions: Various temporal sampling protocols result in different MBF values using Rb-82 PET. MFR measurements were more robust to different temporal sampling protocols.
- Myocardial blood flow
- PET myocardial perfusion imaging
- Temporal sampling