By Eric Barnes, staff writer
November 6, 2012

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The early use of coronary CT angiography (CCTA) in patients with symptoms suggestive of acute coronary syndromes (ACS) shortens the length of hospital stay and reduces time to diagnosis, according to researchers from Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital.

The Rule Out Myocardial Ischemia/Infarction Using Computer Assisted Tomography (ROMICAT) II study sought to determine whether the early use of CCTA was more effective than standard emergency department care. ROMCAT II was a "comparative real-world effectiveness trial," explained Dr. Udo Hoffmann. The study team "wanted to include all possibilities of standard of care, have a good mix of sites that are representative of the real world, and have a patient cohort that has enough risk to justify the use of CT."

With early CCTA, length of stay was reduced by a mean of 7.6 hours, time to diagnosis was shortened, and nearly half of patients were discharged directly from the emergency department, compared with just 12% of patients who underwent standard care.

The presentation will include results from the 28-day follow-up, as well as a new gender analysis of the results, Hoffman said.

In emergency department patients with symptoms suggestive of acute coronary syndromes, CCTA-based triage improves clinical decision-making by reducing the length of hospital stay and increasing discharge rates compared to standard evaluation, the group concluded.

Last Updated hh 11/5/2012 12:23:08 AM