Cardiovascular disease (CVD) affects 7 million people in the UK. The risk of a plaque causing heart attack or death is also driven by inflammation (swelling) in the wall of the coronary artery which is not visible to the current tests used to diagnose CVD. Powerful new drugs cannot be ‘targeted’ to the patients who need them most.
Fat tissue surrounding the artery ‘senses’ the presence of inflammation, and this can be detected by a new technique that can be used on patient’s existing computed tomography (CT) heart scans. This method can identify people at high risk of heart attack and CVD death more accurately than current diagnostic tests. This regulatory approved technology (CaRi-HEARTTM) has been developed by Caristo Diagnostics.
CaRi-HEARTTM will be deployed in NHS hospitals in Oxford, Milton Keynes, Leicester and Wolverhampton to evaluate how the information provided by CaRi-HEARTTM is used by doctors to make treatment decisions in people at high risk of heart attack and CVD death. Oxford AHSN and Oxford Health Economic Centre will support the evaluation. This work will pave the way for CaRi- HEARTTM to become part of every CT heart scan reported in the UK, generating benefits for patients and added value to the NHS.
This independent research is funded by the National Institute for Health Research (Artificial Intelligence, CaRi-HEART: Real-world impact of AI cardiovascular risk prediction from routine CT scans, AI_AWARD 02443) and NHSX.