Appropriateness of cardiovascular computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging in patients with conotruncal defects

Sarah S. Pickard, Aimee K. Armstrong, Sowmya Balasubramanian, Sujatha Buddhe, Kimberly Crum, Grace Kong, Sean M. Lang, Marc V. Lee, Leo Lopez, Shobha S. Natarajan, Mark D. Norris, David A. Parra, Anitha Parthiban, Andrew J. Powell, Bryant Priromprintr, Lindsay S. Rogers, Shagun Sachdeva, Sanket S. Shah, Clayton A. Smith, Kenan W.D. SternYijin Xiang, Luciana T. Young, Ritu Sachdeva

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Background: To promote the rational use of cardiovascular imaging in patients with congenital heart disease, the American College of Cardiology developed Appropriate Use Criteria (AUC), but its clinical application and pre-release benchmarks have not been evaluated. We aimed to evaluate the appropriateness of indications for cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) and cardiovascular computed tomography (CCT) in patients with conotruncal defects and to identify factors associated with maybe or rarely appropriate (M/R) indications. Methods: Twelve centers each contributed a median of 147 studies performed prior to AUC publication (01/2020) on patients with conotruncal defects. To incorporate patient characteristics and center-level effects, a hierarchical generalized linear mixed model was used. Results: Of the 1753 studies (80% CMR, and 20% CCT), 16% were rated M/R. Center M/R ranged from 4 to 39%. Infants accounted for 8.4% of studies. In multivariable analyses, patient- and study-level factors associated with M/R rating included: age <1 year (OR 1.90 [1.15–3.13]), truncus arteriosus (vs. tetralogy of Fallot, OR 2.55 [1.5–4.35]), and CCT (vs. CMR, OR 2.67 [1.87–3.83]). None of the provider- or center-level factors reached statistical significance in the multivariable model. Conclusions: Most CMRs and CCTs ordered for the follow-up care of patients with conotruncal defects were rated appropriate. However, there was significant center-level variation in appropriateness ratings. Younger age, CCT, and truncus arteriosus were independently associated with higher odds of M/R rating. These findings could inform future quality improvement initiatives and further exploration of factors resulting in center-level variation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)211-219
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Cardiovascular Computed Tomography
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1 May 2023


  • Appropriate use criteria
  • Cardiac imaging
  • Cardiovascular computed tomography
  • Cardiovascular magnetic resonance
  • Congenital heart disease
  • Conotruncal defects


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