Cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (CMR) uses an MRI scanner to provide high resolution, accurate static and moving images of the heart and vasculature, in a non-invasive scan without the need for x-ray radiation. As such, it has become the gold standard imaging technique for the investigation of many cardiac conditions and an integral requirement for the diagnosis and management of cardiac disease.
High resolution imaging of the structure of the heart and major blood vessels is obtained.
The most accurate 3D assessment of both left and right heart function. Used in assessing all forms of heart disease.
Heart muscle blood flow:
Precise assessment of the microvascular blood flow (perfusion) through the heart muscle during drug simulated exercise. Used to investigate possible angina or coronary artery problems.
Heart muscle response to exercise:
Assessment of improved heart muscle contraction (pumping) with simulated exercise.
Heart muscle damage:
MRI is the only investigation capable of looking at muscle damage at the microscopic level. As well as diagnosing multiple causes of heart disease, this investigation is invaluable in assessing the risk of future problems such as life threatening heart rhythm disturbance.
The accuracy of cardiac MRI flow analysis enables it to determine the degree of heart valve problems, and guide need for treatments such as medication or surgery.
Complex heart disease:
Due to the broad spectrum of information that cardiac MRI can provide, it is the recommended investigation for complex situations such as congenital heart disease.