Emory Cardiac Toolbox

Garcia, E

Since 1993 and continuing today, Dr. Ernest Garcia and his colleagues at Emory and elsewhere have developed the initial and subsequent versions of the Emory Cardiac Toolbox™ (ECTb™), the package of software tools now used in roughly 40% of all nuclear labs in the U.S. As currently configured, the Emory Cardiac Toolbox™ 2.0 suite is a comprehensive, integrated package of tools for processing, displaying, interpreting, analyzing and reporting SPECT myocardial perfusion studies and includes Cequal™, Cequal™ IDL, Cequal™ IDL Optional Databases, PERFEX™,PerfSPECTive™ IDL, PerfSPECTive™ IDL with Image Fusion - Angio, EMORY Gated SPECT-EGS, PET Tools, Attenuation Correction Normal Database, Heart Fusion™, and NCTb Viewer™ software. Initially, Emory licensed ECTb™ and/or its component “tools” directly to original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), such as Siemens Medical Systems, GE (Elgems), Marconi Medical (Picker Intl.), SMV America, Toshiba Corporation, and ADAC Laboratories.

In 2001, Emory exclusively licensed this technology and transferred the existing licenses and 510(k) approvals, to Syntermed, Inc., an Emory start-up company. Syntermed has contributed to the evolution of this product by adapting the software for operation on a PC. Thus, by downloading patient files over a modem or high speed line, nuclear medicine physicians, nuclear cardiologists, and radiologists with the ECTb Network™ on their desktop or laptop PC will have access to patient files, and will have the ability to interpret patient studies and generate a report, while at home, or out of town for business or vacation. In the hospital, the ECTb Network™ software can be loaded onto PCs that are connected to a hospital network, allowing the technologist to process the patient’s study, and attending physicians, residents and referring physicians to instantly review the study.

The PETtools™ analysis is one of the tools integrated into the Emory Cardiac Toolbox and allows normalization of the 2-fluorodeoxy-D-glucose (FDG) and perfusion polar maps. PETtools also allows the user to look at the difference between the two distributions, and set a threshold according to percent difference as a baseline value for mismatch and thereby improve the use of cardiac PET. PETtools™ includused rest/stress databases for showing myocardial perfusion, quantification of global and regional function using ECG-Gated FDG. and analysis of perfusion FDG match/mismatch and left ventricular function.

ERTb™ (Emory Reconstruction Toolbox™), which is marketed by Syntermed as ReconTools™, is a comprehensive software package designed to significantly improve the quality and accessibility of nuclear cardiology images and was developed by Emory medical scientists Ernest Garcia, PhD, and Ji Chen, PhD, and their colleagues through a grant from the Georgia Research Alliance (GRA). ERTb performs image reconstruction and synthesis, quality control and correction for patient and physical phenomena to provide high-quality myocardial perfusion SPECT images for cardiovascular diagnosis. ERTb™, which can be used on any standalone PC, is designed to be the image generating "front end" for the widely used Emory Cardiac Toolbox™, a vast set of software tools for evaluating cardiac images, developed by Garcia and his colleagues at Emory and elsewhere over the past 20 years. The Emory Cardiac Toolbox™ is used in almost half of the cardiac laboratories in the United States

SyncTool™ is based on multi-harmonic phase analysis of gated SPECT or cardiac PET images, and was developed by E.V. Garcia, PhD, and J. Chen, MD. The system provides cardiologists with a tool for analysis of cardiac perfusion and diagnosis of left ventricular dyssynchrony, which shows more information than what can traditionally be obtained by TDI Echo, such as presence and location of scar tissue. SyncTool™ integrates with Emory Toolbox™ for optimum efficiency.