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Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance - The basics

Course on Cardiac CT and MRI: clinical applications – Organised jointly with the ESC Working Group on Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance and the ESC Working Group on Nuclear Cardiology and Cardiac Computed Tomography

Cardiac Magnetic Resonance

The main objective of this session was to inform the audience about the basic principles and key clinical applications of Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance (CMR).

Aernout Beek opened the session with an overview of CMR methodology, with particular emphasis on how it differs from echocardiography. Dr Beek gave an overview of how CMR is performed, taking the audience through a typical CMR examination, highlighting in particular practical and safety aspects. He then highlighted clinical indications in which CMR is particularly useful as an adjunct to echocardiography.

In the following presentation, Sven Plein gave a summary of the use of CMR in coronary artery disease (CAD). He explained that in stable chronic CAD, the accuracy of CMR is at least comparable to that of other imaging modalities. CMR has particular advantages over other imaging tests for myocardial perfusion imaging and scar assessment because of its very high spatial resolution. In acute presentations of CAD, CMR can be used to characterize infarctions in detail and contribute to the risk stratification of patients.

Claudia Deluigi expanded on the use of CMR in patients with cardiomyopathy. Showing case examples of patients with dilated and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, she highlighted in particular the ability of late gadolinium enhancement (LGE) CMR to differentiate ischemic from non-ischemic heart disease and to guide prognostication. She also highlighted the use of LGE CMR in the diagnosis of cardiac amyloidosis, where typical patterns of enhancement are often seen.

For the final presentation, Emanuela Valsangiacomo kindly stood in at very short notice for a late speaker withdrawal. She gave an overview of the indications and usefulness of CMR in congenital heart disease (CHD). Here, CMR plays an increasing role for the serial and comprehensive imaging of the patients, who require serial assessment often over decades, so that avoidance of exposure to ionizing radiation is critical. Using examples from a wide range of conditions, she demonstrated the unique ability of CMR to provide a comprehensive anatomical and functional assessment for diagnosis and follow-up of patients with CHD.




Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance - The basics

The content of this article reflects the personal opinion of the author/s and is not necessarily the official position of the European Society of Cardiology.

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