CLINICAL RESEARCH: A new award-winning computer system which assesses heart disease better than the naked eye which could revolutionise the way patients with conditions such angina and heart attack are assessed and treated has been introduced at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

The brand new prototype technology has been developed and built by doctors and researchers from Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and the University of Sheffield.

It is capable of detecting which heart patients need treatment more sensitively and more accurately than the human eye by creating a 3-D model of the coronary arteries during an angiogram. This reduces the need for further invasive tests and procedures.

The software is being trialled on 100 heart diseases patients from the South Yorkshire area.

Dr Julian Gunn, a Consultant Cardiologist at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and a Senior Lecturer at the University of Sheffield’s Department of Cardiovascular Science, said: “Any patient with coronary heart disease who has an angiogram can, in the future, have a computerised assessment of the significance of their disease. This will enable the cardiologist or surgeon to know where to place a bypass graft or stent, without any further tests, so this is a real breakthrough for patients.

“The technology will further improve the diagnosis and may reduce the need for some patients to have more invasive tests afterwards. It will also help doctors decide which arteries need treating and even which bits of which arteries, and guide therapy.”