Quantification of valvular aortic stenosis by magnetic resonance imaging

Matthias G Friedrich, Jeanette Schulz-Menger, Thomas Poetsch, Bernhard Pilz, Frank Uhlich, Rainer Dietz
American Heart Journal 2002, 144 (2): 329-34

BACKGROUND: Assessing the aortic valvular orifice is important in judging the severity of aortic stenosis. Magnetic resonance imaging visualizes in-plane valvular motion. We studied the value of magnetic resonance planimetry of the aortic valve orifice.

METHODS: We used breath-hold gradient echocardiographic sequences on a clinical magnetic resonance system (1.5 T) and studied 25 patients with symptomatic valvular aortic stenosis. We performed a planimetry of the valvular orifice in systolic images of the valvular plane. The results were compared with echocardiography (continuity equation) and cardiac catheterization (Gorlin formula).

RESULTS: Magnetic resonance planimetry was feasible in all patients, and the image quality was invariably adequate. The magnetic resonance imaging results correlated well with the data calculated from catheterization and less robustly with the echocardiographic results. The 3 methods were similar in terms of leading to clinical decisions.

CONCLUSIONS: We suggest that magnetic resonance flow planimetry of the aortic valve orifice offers a simple, reliable, fast, and safe method to noninvasively quantify aortic stenosis.

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