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Winter brainstorm meeting report from Nuclear Cardiology and Cardiac CT Working Group

The traditionally winter brainstorm meeting took place in Kitzbuhel from 28 to 30 march 2011, with presentations and discussions concerning the development of noninvasive imaging in cardiovascular medicine In particular, the “Think tank round table” sessions presented a very interesting way for exchange of ideas and discussion. The results presented in a dedicated session could be the start point for developing protocols and created joint ventures between the nucleus.
A dedicated session with presentations from across Europe demonstrated the considerable differences in the practice and reimbursement of cardiovascular imaging. 
Non-invasive Imaging: Nuclear Cardiology

Brief summary:

-  “My perspective and expectations as a young imager”: E. Reyes suggest the necessity to adopt a way of imaging that parallels the needs of our societies and the world in general; more accessibility, lower costs, environmentally friendly practices, flexible working hours, which can rarely offer by other medical specialities. A year on after the publication of the guidelines and the views are widely divided. Although there is no formal position statement from the cardiology community, the justification for not embracing the recommendations/ for the lack of colleagues and institution embracing the recommendations revolve around shortage of experts, limited availability, costs of implementation, qualification and certification, etc... Hence, this is the best time to promote and consolidate the use of imaging.

- Tops and flops in nuclear Cardiology/cardiac CT and consequences for our current practice: Think tank round tables
In this session, participants were divided in several groups, in order to discuss these topics:  Merits and pitfalls of absolute flow quantification, Stenosis assessment versus invasive, Working group and political activities, Hybrid imaging, Risk stratification – rock solid or still debatable, Tracer and translational research still strong or fading away.
Results of the round tables were presented in a plenary session, where the discussion was very exciting.
As a matter of fact, despite some merits were reached, some pitfalls are present.
For this reason the WG should be used for: 
1. Dissemination (publications, scientific sessions etc) based on disease-oriented imaging instead of modality-driven imaging
2. Education in multimodality imaging at multilevel training: Cardiology residency,  Post-specialty
3. Promotion of different levels of training: local, centers of excellence , national (special training year within and/or outside cardiology training)

- Radiation: Concerns – too many or important principle: P. Kaufmann pointed the attention on the measure that WG should take versus radiation issue.  As a matter of fact we need to provide solid data versus radiation safety: by joining registries, by getting access to large database (i.e.: Access National databases to identify patients with medical imaging who died from cancer, data from registries on radiation oncology patients to assess the rate of secondary tumours, data registries on patients who underwent 131I thyroid treatment).