Virtual cardiotomy based on 3-D MRI for preoperative planning in congenital heart disease

Thomas Sangild Sørensen, Philipp Beerbaum, Jesper Mosegaard, Allan Rasmusson, Tobias Schaeffter, Conal Austin, Reza Razavi, Gerald Franz Greil

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Background: Patient-specific preoperative planning in complex congenital heart disease may be greatly facilitated by virtual cardiotomy. Surgeons can perform an unlimited number of surgical incisions on a virtual 3-D reconstruction to evaluate the feasibility of different surgical strategies. Objective: To quantitatively evaluate the quality of the underlying imaging data and the accuracy of the corresponding segmentation, and to qualitatively evaluate the feasibility of virtual cardiotomy. Materials and methods: A whole-heart MRI sequence was applied in 42 children with congenital heart disease (age 3±3 years, weight 13±9 kg, heart rate 96±21 bpm). Image quality was graded 1-4 (diagnostic image quality ≥2) by two independent blinded observers. In patients with diagnostic image quality the segmentation quality was also graded 1-4 (4 no discrepancies, 1 misleading error). Results: The average image quality score was 2.7 - sufficient for virtual reconstruction in 35 of 38 patients (92%) older than 1 month. Segmentation time was 59±10 min (average quality score 3.5). Virtual cardiotomy was performed in 19 patients. Conclusion: Accurate virtual reconstructions of patient-specific cardiac anatomy can be produced in less than 1 h from 3-D MRI. The presented work thus introduces a new, clinically feasible noninvasive technique for improved preoperative planning in complex cases of congenital heart disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1314-1322
Number of pages9
JournalPediatric radiology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2008


  • Children
  • MRI
  • Surgical planning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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