Nuclear cardiology labs in Latin America will have access to the new Emory Toolbox 4.0 software for the assessment of their heart failure patients. The Emory Toolbox software for nuclear cardiology imaging of the heart has been purchased by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to be used in seven South American countries. As part of the IAEA’s initiative to improve the management of patients with heart disease, a project was started to harmonize nuclear cardiology techniques to manage patients affected by congestive heart failure, with an emphasis on Chagas’ cardiomyopathy.
The licenses for Syntermed’s Emory Toolbox software have been procured for nuclear medicine centers in Brazil, Ecuador, Bolivia, Chile, Cuba, Peru, and Colombia. These licenses will be provided through a regional cooperation project of the International Atomic Energy Agency.
Syntermed’s software is designed to be faster, more efficient and user-friendly while providing a comprehensive report to physicians that is more easily accessible given today’s technology.
Chagas disease, a parasitic infection transmitted by the triatomine bug, is considered a major health concern because of the high incidence of heart failure associated with the disease. It is estimated that in Latin America there are close to 16 –18 million infected people with Chagas disease, of which over 25 percent will develop chronic illnesses, mainly heart disease. Close to 45,000 annual deaths are attributable to Chagas disease in the region. Heart failure is an endemic health problem.
Among the causes of acquired dilated cardiomyopathy in Latin America, Chagas cardiomyopathy is one of the most common, with a prevalence of approximately 24 million of heart failure in areas where the disease is endemic. [Bocchi EA. Heart Failure in South America. Curr Cardiol Rev. 2013;9:147-56] Given the morbidity and mortality from heart failure, as well as the considerable resources that are used to diagnose and treat these patients, appropriate diagnosis and prognosis assessment are vital.
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) was created in 1957, best known for its activities involving nuclear power reactors and preventing proliferation of nuclear weapons. The IAEA is also focused on health improvements utilizing nuclear medicine for the diagnosis and treatment of cardiovascular diseases, cancer, and infection. Many nuclear techniques provide unprecedented sensitivity, speed, and specificity in the prevention and diagnosis of infection.