Background: The main pulmonary artery diameter (mPA), aortic diameter (Ao), and the mPA/Ao ratio, easily measured using chest computed tomography (CT), provide information that enables the diagnosis and evaluation of cardiopulmonary diseases. Here, we used CT to determine the sex- and age-specific distribution of normal reference values for mPA, Ao, and mPA/Ao ratio in an adult Korean population. Methods: Data from non-contrast, ECG-gated, coronary-calcium-scoring CT images of 2,547 individuals who visited the Health Screening Center of the Severance Hospital were analyzed. Healthy individuals (n = 813) included those who do not have hypertension, diabetes, asthma, obstructive lung disease, ischemic heart disease, stroke, smoking, obesity, and abnormal CT findings. Both mPA and Ao were measured at the level of bifurcation of the main pulmonary artery. Results: The mean mPA and Ao were 25.9 mm and 30.0 mm in healthy participants, respectively, while the mean mPA/Ao ratio was 0.87. Medical conditions associated with a larger mPA were male, obesity, smoking history, hypertension, and diabetes. A larger mPA/Ao ratio was associated with female, the obese, non-smoker, normotensive, and normal serum level of lipids, while a smaller mPA/Ao ratio was associated with older age. In healthy individuals, the 90th percentile sex-specific mPA, Ao, and mPA/Ao ratio were, 31.3 mm (95% CI 29.9-32.2), 36.8 mm (95% CI 35.7-37.5), and 1.05 (95% CI 0.99-1.07) in males, and 29.6 mm (95% CI 29.1-30.2), 34.5 mm (95% CI 34.1-34.9), and 1.03 (95% CI 1.02-1.06) in females, respectively. Conclusion: In the Korean population, the mean mPA reference values in male and female were 26.5 mm and 25.8 mm, respectively, while the mean mPA/Ao ratio was 0.87. These values were influenced by a variety of underlying medical conditions.
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© 2015 Lee et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
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