Cardiac Magnetic Resonance, CMR
Cardiac Magnetic Resonance is the method of choice for studying the contractility (ejection fraction) of the left and right ventricle, the atria and congenital heart disease. It also assists in the diagnosis and assessment of heart tumors, conditions of the aorta and large vessels, valvulopathies in natural and prosthetic valves (stenosis/failure), myocarditis, pericarditis, myocardial ischemia/viability, and myocardial iron deposition due to multiple transfusions.
CMR is one of the latest heart imaging techniques. It is bloodless, safe, painless and radiation-free. It is ideal for investigating heart problems.
The Metropolitan Hospital CMR Unit is equipped with state-of-the-art technology, which includes the Skyra 3 Tesla scanner, and is staffed with fully qualified personnel, who have been trained in the USA.
CMR provides significant information on coronary disease. It is useful for studying the origin and morphology of the coronary arteries, as well as myocardial perfusion, mobility both at rest and during stress, and viability.
CMR is applied in the diagnosis of myocarditis and is considered the ideal method, with a sensitivity close to 95-100%. Myocarditis may either have a severe clinical presentation or an atypical form. Over 50% of atypical forms may lead to heart failure if left undiagnosed.
CARDIAC MASS MEASUREMENT
Apart from ventricular functionality, CMR is an ideal method for measuring cardiac mass. It is the method of choice for the study of dilated cardiomyopathy, and the extent and distribution of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. It studies iron deposition in patients who have received multiple transfusions and detects early myocardial failure.
STUDY OF NATURAL AND PROSTHETIC VALVES
Magnetic resonance is successfully used to study natural and prosthetic valves. CMR is just as reliable as an intraesophageal echocardiogram.
ANATOMY OF THE HEART AND LARGE VESSELS
CMR is an excellent method for studying the anatomy of the heart and the large vessels. It is ideal for monitoring patients with aortic aneurysm and arteritis. Heart tumors and the way they connect to the cardiac structures are depicted excellently, providing information on their composition. CMR can also detect pericardial effusions not visible during echocardiography.
The contribution of CMR is decisive in the study of congenital heart disease in children and adults. All patients with a possible heart problem may undergo the scan (excluding patients with pacemakers or defibrillators, and patients suffering from claustrophobia or terminal renal failure).
CMR is extremely convenient, it does not require any preparation on the part of the patient and it offers the possibility of obtaining quality tomographic views.
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