alexa Implication of plaque color classification for assessing plaque vulnerability: a coronary angioscopy and optical coherence tomography investigation.


Angiology: Open Access

Author(s): Kubo T

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The purpose of this study was to assess the relationship between plaque color evaluated by coronary angioscopy and fibrous cap thickness estimated by optical coherence tomography (OCT) in vivo.


Yellow color intensity of coronary plaque evaluated by coronary angioscopy might be associated with plaque vulnerability.


Seventy-seven coronary artery plaques in patients with acute coronary syndrome were observed by angioscopy and OCT. Plaque color was graded as white, light yellow, yellow, or intensive yellow.


There were significant differences among the groups classified by plaque color with respect to the fibrous cap thickness estimated by OCT: 389 +/- 74 mum in white plaques, 228 +/- 51 microm in light yellow plaques, 115 +/- 28 microm in yellow plaques, and 59 +/- 14 microm in intensive yellow plaques (p < 0.0001). In Spearman rank-order correlation analysis, there was a significant negative correlation between yellow color intensity and fibrous cap thickness (p < 0.0001). Furthermore, 80% of intensive yellow plaques were thin cap fibroatheroma with a cap thickness of < or =65 microm.


The plaque color in coronary angioscopy was determined by the fibrous cap thickness, which was assessed by OCT. Although coronary angioscopy remains a specialized research tool, it might allow us to evaluate plaque vulnerability.

This article was published in JACC Cardiovasc Interv and referenced in Angiology: Open Access

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