Cardiac MRI Can Detect Dangerous Heart Disease

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Cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR) imaging may be a non-invasive alternative to stress echocardiogram, catheterization, and other tests used to assess the severity of coronary artery disease, say researchers at Duke University Medical Center in Durham, North Carolina. Results of their large study were published in JAMA Cardiology.

Among more than 9,000 people who underwent CMR at seven hospitals throughout the United States, the researchers found a strong association between abnormal stress CMR and mortality, even after adjusting for age, gender, and heart disease risk factors. In study participants with no history of heart disease and at low-risk using standard criteria, those with abnormal CMR scans were 3.4 times more likely to die of heart disease during the 10-year follow-up than those who had normal CMR scans.

According to the Duke researchers, cardiac magnetic resonance is just as effective or better than other diagnostic tests to assess heart function and detect cell death and low blood flow. And it doesn’t require exposure to radiation like nuclear stress tests, which are the most commonly used tests to evaluate heart disease in the U.S.

Sourced from: JAMA Cardiology