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ITALIAN JOURNAL OF MAXILLOFACIAL SURGERY
A Journal on Maxillofacial Surgery
Official Journal of the Italian Society of Maxillofacial Surgery
Rivista Italiana di Chirurgia Maxillo-Facciale 2001 April;12(1):75-80
The use of multi-slice spiral CT to study cervico-maxillo-facial vascular structures
Cascone P., Santamaria S., Arangio P., Passariello R., Catalano C., Napoli A.
From the Chair of Maxillo-Facial Surgery Institute of Radiology “La Sapienza” University, Rome
Carotidography is still in use to evaluate the distribution of vascular structures in the head and neck, as well as their involvement in intrinsic or extrinsic di-seases. The execution procedure for this method make it an invasive diagnostic technique; though its use is now safe, bed rest is required and the patient is exposed to the risk of complications that, though minimized by the evolution of the materials used, must not be underestimated. The selectivity of the examination whereby the vascular structures are studied does not afford, except indirectly, evaluation of anatomic and topographical relations with the surrounding organs. In order to achieve a correct approach to surgical problems, be they of diagnosis, planning therapy or evaluating treatment, it is therefore necessary that angiography be associated with diagnostic tests (conventional radiography, CT, MR) able to visualize the morpho-structural characteristics of the area involved. The aim of this study is to evaluate the reliability of a new application of instrumental diagnostics: using angiography with multi-slice helical CT to study the vascularization of the cervico-maxillo-facial area and its anatomical reconstruction. The study was performed by analysing and comparing the normal anatomical distribution of the arteries and veins in the cervico-maxillo-facial area with images obtained by angiography with multi-slice spiral CT. Since reports of the pathological images produced by angiography with spiral CT are not yet available in the literature, in our opinion this application must for the moment be associated with conventional carotidography; should the images produced by the two tests be found to be comparable, increasing the reliability of the new method, it is to be hoped that in the short- or medium-term it may become more widely used and replace the conventional method.