Doctors use SPECT to help diagnose coronary heart disease (CHD). Combining SPECT with a stress test can show problems with blood flow to the heart. Sometimes doctors can detect these problems only when the heart is working hard and beating fast.

Doctors also use SPECT to look for areas of damaged or dead heart muscle tissue. These areas might be the result of a previous heart attack or other cause.

SPECT also can show how well the heart’s lower left chamber (left ventricle) pumps blood to the body. Weak pumping ability might be the result of a heart attack, heart failure, and other causes.

Tracers commonly used during SPECT include thallium-201, technetium-99m sestamibi (Cardiolite®), and technetium-99m tetrofosmin (Myoview™).

Source: National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute; National Institutes of Health; U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.