Cardiac MRI > Pathology > Congenital Heart Disease > Congenital Heart Disease

Congenital Heart Disease

Cardiac MRI is quite useful in the evaluation of congenital heart disease in both children and adults. Spin echo techniques are very helpful in determining the complex anatomy that is present in these conditions, while cine imaging is used for functional assessment. Velocity encoded (VENC) imaging is used to quantify blood flow, calculate pressure gradients and determine shunt fractions. Echocardiography is often the initial modality for imaging congenital heart disease. However, echocardiography may be inadequate in post-surgical patients due to scar tissue or patients with a poor acoustic window. Cardiac MRI allows for 3-dimensional imaging of the complex anatomic relationships in congenital heart disease. Since most of these conditions are first discovered in infants and young children, sedation may be needed to complete an MRI.

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