MR angiography – is a method of research of the blood vessels, organs and tissues of the body, which allows to obtain an image without using X-rays.
It is essential for a more accurate diagnosis and facilitates the choice of treatment when it comes to stroke. It allows you to determine the cause of the stroke.
This method makes it possible to obtain images of vessels without having to resort to any radiopaque agents. In some cases, specific contrast agents can be used to obtain a clearer picture. This procedure is painless. There is no evidence that the magnetic field has an adverse effect on human tissue.
Generally, the method of MR angiography is used to diagnose such diseases:
- Saccular brain aneurysm.
- Arteriovenous malformation of cerebral vessels.
- Thrombosis of cerebral arteries.
- Thrombosis and abnormalities of the carotid and vertebral arteries.
- Atherosclerosis (deposition process of atheromatous plaques on the walls of blood vessels).
- Diseases of the carotid and vertebral arteries (narrowing of the lumen).
- Stenosis, or narrowing of the renal artery.
- Vasculitis (inflammation of the walls of blood vessels).
Almost all patients who have had a hemorrhagic or ischemic stroke should undergo MRI angiography to determine the cause of stroke and the subsequent removal of the cause of the disease and possible recurrent stroke.
Obvious advantages of MR angiography
1. The body of the patient is not subjected to irradiation with X-rays.
2. To perform the session of MR angiography, there is no need to apply radiocontrast agent, which may cause allergies in a patient.
3. A clear and detailed images of blood vessels can be obtained without the use of catheters, so there is no risk of possible damage to the artery and complications.
4. Compared with contrast angiography, MR angiography is much cheaper.
5. To study procedures and rehabilitation, you need less time than is required for contrast angiography.
Potential disadvantages of magnetic resonance angiography
1. MRI of the brain and its blood vessels do not cause side effects. However, persons who suffer from claustrophobia may experience anxiety and concern. Sometimes, in order to cope with these feelings, it is recommended the use of sedatives.
2. The first trimester of pregnancy is a contraindication for MR angiography. Instead, the use of ultrasound is recommended for pregnant patients.
3. If the patient’s body has a metal implant, which the patient does not notify a doctor about, then its appearance into the area of research may cause damage.