Magnetic Resonance Angiogram (MRA)
A Magnetic Resonance Angiogram (MRA) provides very detailed images of the blood vessels to identify the following conditions:
MRA uses magnetic fields and radio waves to produce these images. No radiation or x-rays are used for this test. This exam:
A contrast agent may be used to improve the quality of the images. Non-iodinated, gadolinium-based contrast media is often administered as part of this examination. Gadolinium is a rare earth element that has specific properties useful in a magnetic field, making it a crucial component of magnetic resonance contrast media. Unlike the x-ray contrast dye, the MRA contrast agent does not:
All patients undergoing MRA need to be screened to ensure that certain safeguards are in place. If contrast will be administered, you will have a point-of-care test to determine your kidney function before your MRA. Based on the results, your doctors will adjust the dose of contrast administered or may perform the test without contrast. If you have any metal inside of your body, please tell your doctor before the exam. This may include:
If you have any of the above in your body, a physician will review the protocol and determine if it is safe to perform a MRA.
For more information regarding clinical trials related to vascular disease, visit the Clinical Trials Unit of Northwestern, send an email or call 312-926-4000.
For more information regarding vascular disease, please contact the Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute at 312-NM-HEART (664-3278) or request a first-time appointment online.