Beta blockers and the sensitivity of the thallium treadmill test

G. J. Martin, R. E. Henkin, P. J. Scanlon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations

Abstract

The effect beta blockers (BB) may have on the sensitivity of the thallium treadmill test (Th-TMT) is controversial. The purpose of this study was to test the hypothesis that BB decrease the sensitivity of the Th-TMT. Two hundred three patients over a two-year period were identified who satisfied the following criteria. All had symptom-limited upright treadmill exercise tests with stress and redistribution thallium imaging, as well as coronary angiography within two months of the Th-TMT. Of 58 patients with CAD not on BB, 52 had an abnormal Th-TMT scan (sensitivity 90 percent). In comparison, the sensitivity of the Th-TMT scan in the 88 patients with CAD receiving BB was 76 percent (p < 0.05). We conclude that BB may significantly decrease the sensitivity of the Th-TMT. Physicians should fully appreciate the higher false negative rate (24 vs 10 percent) for patients on BB and consider cautious withdrawal prior to diagnostic studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)486-487
Number of pages2
JournalCHEST
Volume92
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 1987

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

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