Evaluation of myocardial viability by MRI.
Distinguishing between viable and non-viable myocardium is an important clinical issue. Several magnetic resonance (MR) techniques to address this issue have been proposed. Spectroscopy of phosphorus-31 and hydrogen-1 from creatine as well as imaging of sodium-23 and potassium-39 reflect information related to cellular metabolism. The spatial and temporal resolutions of these techniques are limited, however, by the small magnitude of the MR signal. Proton imaging techniques include examination of pathologic alterations in MR relaxation times (T1 and T2), wall thickness and thickening, cine MRI combined with low-dose dobutamine, first-pass contrast enhancement patterns, and delayed contrast enhancement patterns. Of the proton imaging approaches, cine MRI combined with low-dose dobutamine is supported by the largest body of clinical evidence supporting the hypothesis that the technique yields useful information regarding myocardial viability. Recent data suggest that delayed contrast enhancement examines the transmural extent of viable myocardium irrespective of contractile function and that this technique should also be considered in a clinical setting.
Kim, RJ; Hillenbrand, HB; Judd, RM
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