Chief of Cardiology
MRI stands for magnetic resonance imaging. It is a non-invasive method to evaluate structure and function of the heart. Unlike other imaging techniques, MRI does not expose the patient to ionizing radiation. MRI uses powerful magnetic field and radio-frequency waves to create changes is tissues. Based on the characteristics of tissues, these changes can be transformed into an image by a computer. ECG is used to monitor the heart and both still and moving images are created.
Gadolinium is used as a contrast agent. This is a non-iodine based contrast and is less likely to cause an allergic reaction. However, it should not be used in patients with significant kidney disease.
There are a variety of reasons that your physician may request an MRI of your heart. These include:
Okay to use MRI on patients with prosthetic heart valves, sternal wires, joint replacements, retained epicardial pacing leads and following intra-coronary stent placement (discuss the timing with your doctor)