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Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonace Imaging

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  1. Thoracic aorta and great vessels
  2. Cardiac tumors and masses
  3. Pericardium and pericardial effusions
  4. Congenital heart disease
  5. Quantitative assessment of ventricular volumes and mass
  6. Cardiomyopathies
  7. Coronary artery disease
  8. Special considerations for CMR in cardiac patients
  9. Conclusions
  10. Bibliography

More than any other imaging technique, cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) offers the potential for dramatically changing current imaging strategies for the evaluation of patients with known or suspected cardiovascular disease. The combined attributes of superior image quality and flexibility for assessment of cardiac anatomy, ventricular function, great vessel and coronary anatomy and blood flow, myocardial viability, and myocardial perfusion give CMR tremendous potential for evaluation of the cardiovascular system.

[...] CARDIOVASCULAR MAGNETIC RESONANCE IMAGING More than any other imaging technique, cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) offers the potential for dramatically changing current imaging strategies for the evaluation of patients with known or suspected cardiovascular disease. The combined attributes of superior image quality and flexibility for assessment of cardiac anatomy, ventricular function, great vessel and coronary anatomy and blood flow, myocardial viability, and myocardial perfusion give CMR tremendous potential for evaluation of the cardiovascular system. Current clinical applications of CMR are expanding rapidly, but are not "mainstream" at most institutions. [...]


[...] Although rarely difficult to diagnose from echocardiographic images, benign lipomatous hypertrophy of the interatrial septum as visualized on echocardiography may sometimes lead to the misdiagnosis of an atrial septal "tumor." The characteristic, very bright signal from fatty tissue on T1-weighted spin-echo magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) readily allows for the diagnosis of this benign disorder. Pericardium and Pericardial Effusions The normal pericardium is seen as a thin black line between visceral and parietal pericardial fat on spin-echo MRI. Normal pericardial thickness is less than 3 mm. [...]


[...] CT is also valuable in this situation and is better for specific assessment of pericardial calcifications. However, even though both MRI and CT accurately quantify focal pericardial thickening, the isolated presence of global or focal pericardial thickening is not diagnostic of constrictive physiology. Congenital Heart Disease CMR is useful for the assessment of both simple and complex congenital heart disease. Although atrial septal defects and ventricular septal defects in adults are generally well appreciated by transthoracic echocardiography and/or TEE, phase contrast MRI allows for quantification of blood flow through the major blood vessels, thereby facilitating quantification of the ratio of pulmonary to systemic flow. [...]

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