Magnetic Resonance Angiography
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Reasons for Test
- Identify diseased, narrowed, enlarged, and blocked blood vessels
- Locate internal bleeding
What to Expect
Prior to Test
- Arrange for a ride home.
- Do not eat or drink for at least four hours before the exam.
- Take the sedative 1-2 hours before the exam, or as directed.
You will be asked about the following:
- Medical and surgical history
- Whether you have any metal objects in your body
You will be asked if you have something in your body that would interfere with the MRA, such as:
- Pacemaker or implantable defibrillator
- Ear implant
- Metal fragments in your eyes or in any other part of your body—Tell your doctor if your work involves metal filings or particles.
- Implanted port device, such as an insulin pump
- Metal plate, pins, screws, or surgical staples
- Metal clips from aneurysm repair
- Retained bullets
- Any other large metal objects in your body (Tooth fillings and braces are usually fine.)
- You will remove any metal objects (such as jewelry, hearing aids, glasses) and change into a gown.
- An x-ray may be taken to check for any metal objects in your body.
- Given earplugs or headphones to wear (The MRI machine makes a loud banging noise.)
- Given an injection of a contrast dye into your vein
- Allowed to have a family member or friend with you during the test
Description of the Test
- You will be asked to wait at the facility while the images are examined. The technician may need more images.
- If you took a sedative, do not drive or operate machinery until it wears off.
- If you are breastfeeding and receive contrast dye, you and your doctor should discuss when you should restart breastfeeding. Information available has not found any ill effects to the baby if a breastfeeding mother has had contrast dye.
- Be sure to follow your doctor's instructions.
How Long Will It Take?
Will It Hurt?
- Loud knocking or tapping noises from the machine
- Brief stinging when the IV needle is inserted (if contrast is used)
Call Your Doctor
- Worsening of symptoms
- Allergic or abnormal symptoms (if contrast material was used)
American Heart Association http://www.americanheart.org
College of Family Physicians of Canada http://www.cfpc.ca
Health Canada http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/index-eng.php
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). University of Iowa Department of Radiology website. Available at: http://www.radiology.uiowa.edu/MRI/index.html. Accessed July 27, 2009.
MRI. HeartCenterOnline website. Available at: http://yourtotalhealth.ivillage.healthline.com/adamcontent/mri. Updated October 2008. Accessed July 27, 2009.
MR angiography (MRA). RadiologyInfo website. Available at: http://www.radiologyinfo.org. Updated June 3009. Accessed July 27, 2009.
Yucel EK, Anderson CM, Edelman RR, et al. Magnetic resonance angiography: update on applications for extracranial arteries. Circulation. 1999;100:2284.
- Reviewer: Michael J. Fucci, DO
- Review Date: 09/2012 -
- Update Date: 00/92/2012 -