Identification des plaques d'athérosclérose coronaire instables

Translated title of the contribution: Identification of Unstable Coronary Atherosclerotic Plaques

G. Helft, S. G. Worthley, F. Beygui, A. G. Zaman, C. Le Feuvre, A. Vacheron, J. Ph Metzger, J. J. Badimon, V. Fuster

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


The mechanisms of atherogenesis are better understood and the detection of atherosclerosis has improved with the different diagnostic methods currently available. However, it is almost impossible at present to differentiate high risk, unstable or vulnerable plaques from quiescent or stable plaques of atherosclerosis. This is a crucial problem given the banality of atherosclerosis on the one hand, and, on the other hand, the serious consequences (acute coronary syndromes, cerebro-vascular accidents) of thrombotic occlusion at the site of an atherosclerotic plaque. It has now been established that the composition of the plaque is more important than the degree of stenosis, a fundamental concept in the risk of plaque rupture, precipitating the cascade of reactions leading to uncontrolled thrombosis. Consequently, new imaging techniques should address the problem of analysing the composition of atheromatous plaques. Endovascular ultrasonography, fast CT, angioscopy, nuclear imaging techniques and MRI are so many promising tools. However, non-invasive techniques should be distinguished from invasive ones. In all prbability, it will be the former which will turn out to be the most useful diagnostic aid in pauci or asymptomatic patients. This article reviews the different imaging techniques under evaluation for the identification of risk of plaque rupture.

Translated title of the contributionIdentification of Unstable Coronary Atherosclerotic Plaques
Original languageFrench
Pages (from-to)583-590
Number of pages8
JournalArchives des Maladies du Coeur et des Vaisseaux
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2001


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