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The role of cardiovascular CT in occupational health assessment for coronary heart disease

Press releases may be edited for formatting or style | May 03, 2021 Cardiology CT X-Ray

This document, which is currently in press in the Journal of Cardiovascular Computed Tomography (JCCT), addresses the current need for guidance in the use of cardiac CT in risk assessment of coronary artery disease (CAD) in occupational health evaluation. The document provides evidence regarding the prevalence of CAD, the incidence of major adverse cardiac events (MACE), and recommendations for enhanced cardiovascular screening and investigation for CAD evaluation amongst safety sensitive occupations.

According to Ahmad Slim, MD, FSCCT, chair of the expert consensus writing group: “This document aims to address widespread variation in occupational health evaluation, and provide consensus guidance regarding occupation and patient-specific criteria that may warrant additional enhanced screening for cardiovascular disease.”

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Safety sensitive occupations are defined as those where sudden incapacitation or sudden death may endanger the safety of others. This document reviewed pilots, astronauts, commercial drivers, military personnel, police officers and firefighters.

“A review of the current occupational guidelines suggests that many organizations still rely on traditional CAD risk evaluation with or without the use of cardiac stress testing (whether exercise ECG or functional imaging). This approach runs the risk of missing important occupational CAD,” explained Slim. The decision to pursue a test for occupational screening must weigh individual considerations against the duty to protect society at large, considering various occupational hazards, access to medical care and the level of risk accepted by the employer.

About the Society of Cardiovascular Computed Tomography
Founded in 2005, the Society of Cardiovascular Computed Tomography (SCCT) is the international professional society devoted to improving health outcomes through effective use of cardiovascular computed tomography (CCT). SCCT is a community of physicians, scientists and technologists from over 85 countries advocating for access, research, education and clinical excellence in the use of CCT.

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