Cardiology, Family Doctor Services & Aesthetics
Warschauer Strasse 56
Ringbahnstr. 76 – 80
In cooperation with the experienced colleagues from medneo, we offer you the cardio MRI examination as a self-pay or private service. We use the technical equipment and the premises of the medneo Diagnostic Centre at Reinhardtstr. 23-27 in 10117 Berlin.
When is a cardio MRI performed?
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) – like any magnetic resonance imaging – provides highly accurate insights into the inside of the human body. While the patient lies in a long magnetic tube, the anatomy and function of the heart can be viewed on the screen during a cardio-MRI. In this way, functional disorders as well as structural damage can be detected. In addition, the course of a cardiovascular disease or of therapy progress can be monitored by means of repeated cardio-MRIs.
There are a variety of indications that suggest a cardio-MRI for clarification:
What are the risks of cardiac MRI for patients?
Contrary to widespread misconceptions, an MRI does not work with X-rays, which are known to harm human cells and should therefore only be used for a short time. Here, MRI is often confused with computer tomography. As its name suggests, an MRI “scans” the body with magnetic fields and radio waves – according to the current state of research, this does not pose any risk to patients.
However, caution is advised for a small group of patients: For example, if you have an older pacemaker, you should first check whether it contains ferromagnetic materials. These can also be found in a cochlear implant or as metal splinters in the body, which is why you will be asked about this before a cardio-MRI. Modern pacemakers and defibrillators usually no longer contain ferromagnetic materials and therefore do not stand in the way of a cardio-MRI.
What is the procedure for a cardio MRI?
You will be informed in detail about the examination and asked about your medical history (anamnesis). If you suffer from claustrophobia, you can take a sedative before the cardio-MRI – in this case, however, you should bring along a companion for the way home for your safety. It is important that you do not wear any metal on your body during the examination, such as jewellery like piercings. It could not only impair the quality of the image, but also cause injuries, because it can be set in motion by the magnetic field. Shortly before the examination, a contrast medium will be injected into your arm vein to make it easier to see the blood flow.
For a cardiac MRI, you are placed in a magnetic tube, which is technically called an MRI scanner. In some cases, there is a coil on your chest that amplifies the signal and thus provides more precise insights. During the examination, which usually lasts between 20 and 45 minutes, you will be asked to hold your breath from time to time so that the chest does not move.
In addition, you wear sensors for an ECG (electrocardiogram) on your chest, which registers the heart’s currents. These signals are synchronised with the MRI data to obtain more accurate cross-sectional images.
Stress cardiac MRI versus rest cardiac MRI.
By default, a cardio MRI is performed at rest, i.e. you as a patient are relaxed and have a pulse in the normal range. However, if there is a suspicion of circulatory disorders, it can be useful to combine such a resting cardio-MRI with a stress cardio-MRI. In this way, it can be determined whether the heart is also sufficiently supplied with blood under stress.
Since no physical activity is possible in the MRI tube (as is the case with the stress ECG on the ergometer), the stress on the cardiovascular system is simulated with a drug injected into the arm vein. It drives up the pulse and causes physical reactions like during sport: faster breathing, palpitations, sweating. These signs usually disappear immediately when the injection is stopped. For your safety, the stress cardio MRI is monitored by a cardiologist with an ECG and blood pressure monitor so that he or she can intervene immediately in the event of any side effects such as cardiac arrhythmia or a drop in blood pressure.
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