Cardiac MRI

What is Cardiac MRI?

MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) is a diagnostic imaging test.

At the Heart Institute at UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, cardiac MRI tests produce very clear and detailed images of the heart and other structures within the body using:

  • A large, strong magnet.
  • Radiofrequency waves.
  • A computer.

This means our doctors are able to peer inside the chest wall of young patients without having to use catheters or expose them to radiation, as they might using more traditional imaging methods.

The data these images provide is vital to diagnosing and managing heart disease in children.

Why Might My Child Need a Cardiac MRI?

We may perform an MRI on your child's heart to:

  • Evaluate the heart's structure.
  • Measure the size of the heart's chambers.
  • Assess blood flow to the heart muscle.
  • Look for infections.
  • Detect tumors.
  • Assess blood flow to and from the lungs and the body.

Depending on the results of the MRI, your child may need more tests or procedures to gather further diagnostic information.

A Look at the Heart From Every Angle with Less Risk

At Children’s Heart Institute, we combine the skill of our pediatric radiologists with advanced equipment and software to offer a full range of cardiac MRI studies.

Our advanced heart MRI techniques allow your child's doctors and care team to:

  • View the body's organs and structures in detail, including rotating pictures of the heart and vessels.
  • Study cardiac output, blood flow volume and speed, and other measures of how the heart and vessels are functioning.
  • Get the images and data they need, while exposing their patients to less risk and discomfort.

Make an Appointment for a Heart MRI

To make an appointment or learn more about cardiac MRI testing, contact the Heart Institute at UPMC Children's Hospital at 412-692-5540.