Fractional Flow Reserve and Coronary Bifurcation Anatomy: A Novel Quantitative Model to Assess and Report the Stenosis Severity of Bifurcation Lesions

Shengxian Tu, Mauro Echavarria-Pinto, Clemens von Birgelen, Niels R. Holm, Stylianos A. Pyxaras, Indulis Kumsars, Ming Kai Lam, Ilona Valkenburg, Gabor G. Toth, Yingguang Li, Javier Escaned, William Wijns, Johan H.C. Reiber

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)
47 Downloads (Pure)


Objectives: The aim of this study was to develop a new model for assessment of stenosis severity in a bifurcation lesion including its core. The diagnostic performance of this model, powered by 3-dimensional quantitative coronary angiography to predict the functional significance of obstructive bifurcation stenoses, was evaluated using fractional flow reserve (FFR) as the reference standard.

Background: Development of advanced quantitative models might help to establish a relationship between bifurcation anatomy and FFR.

Methods: Patients who had undergone coronary angiography and interventions in 5 European cardiology centers were randomly selected and analyzed. Different bifurcation fractal laws, including Murray, Finet, and HK laws, were implemented in the bifurcation model, resulting in different degrees of stenosis severity.ResultsA total of 78 bifurcation lesions in 73 patients were analyzed. In 51 (65%) bifurcations, FFR was measured in the main vessel. A total of 34 (43.6%) interrogated vessels had an FFR ≤0.80. Correlation between FFR and diameter stenosis was poor by conventional straight analysis (ρ = −0.23, p < 0.001) but significantly improved by bifurcation analyses: the highest by the HK law (ρ = −0.50, p < 0.001), followed by the Finet law (ρ = −0.49, p < 0.001), and the Murray law (ρ = −0.41, p < 0.001). The area under the receiver-operating characteristics curve for predicting FFR ≤0.80 was significantly higher by bifurcation analysis compared with straight analysis: 0.72 (95% confidence interval: 0.61 to 0.82) versus 0.60 (95% confidence interval: 0.49 to 0.71; p = 0.001). Applying a threshold of ≥50% diameter stenosis, as assessed by the bifurcation model, to predict FFR ≤0.80 resulted in 23 true positives, 27 true negatives, 17 false positives, and 11 false negatives.

Conclusions: The new bifurcation model provides a comprehensive assessment of bifurcation anatomy. Compared with straight analysis, identification of lesions with preserved FFR values in obstructive bifurcation stenoses was improved. Nevertheless, accuracy was limited by using solely anatomical parameters.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)564-574
JournalJACC : cardiovascular interventions
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • Coronary bifurcation
  • Fractional flow reserve
  • Quantitative coronary angiography


Dive into the research topics of 'Fractional Flow Reserve and Coronary Bifurcation Anatomy: A Novel Quantitative Model to Assess and Report the Stenosis Severity of Bifurcation Lesions'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this