Our institution employs gallium-67 single-photon emission computed tomography low-dose CT (Ga-SPECT-CT) to determine the presence and extent of left ventricular assist device (LVAD) infections. We present a retrospective single-center study of 41 LVAD recipients who underwent Ga-SPECT-CT from January 2011 to June 2018 to determine whether Ga-SPECT-CT led to changes in antimicrobial therapy, LVAD revision or exchange, or application for 1A exception. The average age was 56.6 years, predominantly male (80.5%) and diabetic (68.3%), divided between ischemic (48.8%) and nonischemic (51.2%) cardiomyopathy. The majority had HeartMate II devices (82.9%). Device-related infections were classified as possible (12.2%), probable (36.6%), proven (36.6%), or rejected (14.6%). Sensitivity was 68.6% and specificity was 100%. Most VAD-specific infections were percutaneous deep driveline infections (DRIs) (34.1%), and VAD-related infections were primarily bloodstream infections (31.7%). Staphylococcus aureus was the major pathogen isolated. Gallium-67 single-photon emission computed tomography low-dose CT resulted in changes in management in more than half (53.7%) of patients: starting (24.4%) or stopping (17.1%) antimicrobial therapy, LVAD revision (22.0%) or exchange (12.2%), and the application for 1A exception for transplant listing (17.1%). We conclude that Ga-SPECT-CT is an effective modality for determining the presence and extent of LVAD DRIs, and contributed to a change in management in more than half of cases.
- gallium scan
- left ventricular assist device
- single-photon emission computed tomography-CT
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biomedical Engineering