Publication Date



Journal of Cardiothoracic Surgery


INTRODUCTION: There is no consensus as to which patients should undergo Non-Contrast Chest Computerized Tomography (NCCCT) and carotid arteries Doppler (CD) prior to cardiac surgery. The objective of this study was to examine whether preoperative imaging modalities provide clinical benefits and a change in surgical strategy.

METHODS: We routinely performed NCCCT and CD in all non-urgent cardiac surgery patients. Major NCCCT/CD findings related to cardiovascular findings (aortic calcification/atherosclerosis, carotid artery plaque/stenosis), or other incidental findings (lung kidney, thyroid, adrenal, gastrointestinal sites etc.) were documented. The results were divided into 3 categories: (A) findings requiring both changes in surgical strategy and post-operative evaluation/treatment; (B) findings requiring changes in surgical strategy, but not requiring a specific post-operative evaluation/treatment; (C) findings not requiring changes in surgical strategy but requiring post-operative evaluation/treatment.

RESULTS: In this cohort, 93 (18.6%) out of 500 patients had significant cardiac and extra-cardiac findings on NCCCT and/or CD. Among the 93 patients with significant findings, 33.33% (31 patients, 6.2% of all patients) were in group A, 7.5% (7 patients, 1.4% of all patients) were in group B, and 59.14% (55 patients, 11% of all patients) were in group C. Change in surgical strategies included, for example, switching from planned on-pump Coronary Artery Bypass Graft surgery (CABG) to off-pump CABG and performing additional procedures to the originally planned heart surgery.

CONCLUSION: Routine preoperative NCCCT and CD evaluation in all non-urgent cardiac surgical patients is an effective measure for uncovering cardiac and extra-cardiac findings prior to surgery.


Carotid Arteries, Carotid Stenosis, Coronary Artery Bypass, Coronary Artery Bypass, Off-Pump, Humans, Tomography, X-Ray Computed



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