What is a cardiac MRI?
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a non-invasive way of evaluating the heart without the use of radiation. MRI uses a powerful magnet, radiofrequency waves, and a computer to provide detailed images of the heart that CT, X-ray, and angiography cannot provide. This detailed information can help your cardiologist determine the type and severity of heart disease you may have and what the best
treatment option may be.
- To determine types of cardiomyopathies.
- Coronary heart disease detection
- Cardiac valve problems
- Cardiac tumors
- Evaluate damage after myocardial infarction (Heart attack)
MRI scanners do not use X-rays. Instead, they use a strong magnet and radiofrequency waves. Because of this powerful magnet, it is vital that you remove all metallic belongings in advance of an MRI exam, including watches, jewelry, and items of clothing that have metallic threads or fasteners. In certain cases, you may not be able to have an MRI and will need to discuss alternatives with your doctor. Patients with any kind of metallic implant anywhere in their body should not have an MRI unless their physician is fully aware of the device
and has approved the MRI exam. Under no circumstances should a patient who has a pacemaker have an MRI without prior clearance from their physician/cardiologist.
It is important for you to keep to your regular medication schedule. Just let our staff know what medications you have taken prior to your MRI exam. There may be some medications that need to be held prior to the study. Food and drink There are no restrictions on what you may eat or drink before a typical MRI test.
When to arrive
Please arrive 15 minutes prior to your scheduled exam.
What to wear
For MRI scans, you should wear comfortable clothing; however, you may have to change into a hospital gown. If you are wearing anything metallic, such as jewelry, dentures, eyeglasses, or hearing aids that might interfere with the MRI scan, we will ask you to remove them. You should not have your credit cards in your pockets during the scan because the MRI magnet can affect the magnetic strip on the card. Makeup and nail polish that contains metal particles should be
removed if applied to the area undergoing the MRI examination.
Many of our patients receive a contrast agent intravenously during their MRI scan to give a more detailed picture of the prostate. If your doctor has determined that contrast will be needed, the technologist will place an IV in your arm prior to you going into the scanner.
You may or may not need to take all of your normal medications. Please inform the staff prior to the study which medications you are taking.
The MRI will require the patient to be in a supine position (on the back) for approximately 1 hour.
If you are over 60 or have kidney disease, diabetes, lupus, or multiple myeloma, you may need a blood test beforehand to make sure the contrast is safe.
Exams will be interpreted and sent to the ordering physician typically within one working day.