Further reading

MRI guided cardiac interventions

 Tzifa A, Schaeffter T, Razavi R. Magn Reson Imaging Clin N Am. 2012 Feb;20(1):117-28. doi: 10.1016/j.mric.2011.08.011. MR imaging-guided cardiovascular interventions in young children.

Diagnostic cardiac catheterization procedures in children have been largely replaced by magnetic resonance (MR) imaging studies. However, when invasive catheterization is required, MR imaging has a significant role to play, when combined with invasive pressure measurements. Beyond the established reduction to the radiation dose involved, solely MR image-guided or MR image-assisted catheterization procedures can accurately address clinical questions, such as estimation of pulmonary vascular resistance and cardiac output response to stress, without needing to perform laborious measurements that are prone to errors. This article describes MR image-guided or MR image-assisted cardiac catheterization procedures for diagnosis and intervention in children.

 Tzifa A, Krombach GA, Krämer N, Krüger S, Schütte A, von Walter M, Schaeffter T, Qureshi S, Krasemann T, Rosenthal E, Schwartz CA, Varma G, Buhl A, Kohlmeier A, Bücker A, Günther RW, Razavi R. Circ Cardiovasc Interv. 2010 Dec;3(6):585-92. doi: 10.1161/CIRCINTERVENTIONS.110.957209. Epub 2010 Nov 23. Magnetic resonance-guided cardiac interventions using magnetic resonance-compatible devices: a preclinical study and first-in-man congenital interventions.

BACKGROUND:Percutaneous cardiac interventions are currently performed under x-ray guidance. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has been used to guide intravascular interventions in the past, but mainly in animals. Translation of MR-guided interventions into humans has been limited by the lack of MR-compatible and safe equipment, such as MR guide wires with mechanical characteristics similar to standard guide wires. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the safety and efficacy of a newly developed MR-safe and compatible passive guide wire in aiding MR-guided cardiac interventions in a swine model and describe the 2 first-in-man solely MR-guided interventions. METHODS AND RESULTS: In the preclinical trial, the new MR-compatible wire aided the performance of 20 interventions in 5 swine. These consisted of balloon dilation of nondiseased pulmonary and aortic valves, aortic arch, and branch pulmonary arteries. After ethics and regulatory authority approval, the 2 first-in-man MR-guided interventions were performed in a child and an adult, both with elements of valvar pulmonary stenosis. Catheter manipulations were monitored with real-time MRI sequence with interactive modification of imaging plane and slice position. Temporal resolution was 11 to 12 frames/s. Catheterization procedure times were 110 and 80 minutes, respectively. Both patients had successful relief of the valvar stenosis and no procedural complications. CONCLUSIONS: The described preclinical study and case reports are encouraging that with the availability of the new MR-compatible and safe guide wire, certain percutaneous cardiac interventions will become feasible to perform solely under MR guidance in the future. A clinical trial is underway in our institution.

Kos S, Huegli R, Hofmann E, Quick HH, Kuehl H, Aker S, Kaiser GM, Borm PJ, Jacob AL, Bilecen D. Invest Radiol. 2009 Apr;44(4):234-41. doi: 10.1097/RLI.0b013e31819b00f1. Feasibility of real-time magnetic resonance-guided angioplasty and stenting of renal arteries in vitro and in Swine, using a new polyetheretherketone-based magnetic resonance-compatible guidewire.

OBJECTIVES: Demonstrate the usability of a new polyetheretherketone (PEEK)-based MR-compatible guidewire for renal artery catheterization, angioplasty, and stenting under MR-guidance using MR-visible markers, in vitro and in vivo. MATERIAL AND METHODS: The new 0.035” guidewire with fiber-reinforced PEEK core, a soft tip, and a hydrophilic coating was used. Paramagnetic markings were coated on the wire and nonbraided catheters for passive visualization. Bending stiffness of the guidewire was compared with available hydrophilic guidewires (Terumo Glidewire Stiff and Standard). A human aortic silicon phantom and 2 pigs were used. The study was animal care and use approved by the committee. Under MR-guidance, renal arteries were catheterized, balloon angioplasty was performed, and balloon expandable renal artery stents were deployed in vivo. Post mortem autopsy was performed. Guidewire visibility, pushability, steerability, and device-support capabilities of the marked guidewire were qualitatively assessed. Procedure times were recorded. RESULTS: Bending stiffness of the new PEEK-based wire was comparable with Standard Glidewire. In vitro and in vivo guidewire guidance, catheter configuration, renal artery catheterization, and balloon angioplasty were successful. In pigs, stent deployments were successful in both renal arteries. Autopsy revealed acceptable stent positioning. Guidewire visibility through applied markers was acceptable. Steerability, pushability, and device support were good in vitro and in vivo. CONCLUSIONS:The PEEK-based guide allows percutaneous MR-guided renal artery angioplasty and stenting with sufficient visibility, good steerability, pushability, and device support.

Ratnayaka K, Faranesh AZ, Hansen MS, Stine AM, Halabi M, Barbash IM, Schenke WH, Wright VJ, Grant LP, Kellman P, Kocaturk O, Lederman RJ. Eur Heart J. 2013 Feb;34(5):380-9. doi: 10.1093/eurheartj/ehs189. Epub 2012 Aug 1. Real-time MRI-guided right heart catheterization in adults using passive catheters.

AIMS: Real-time MRI creates images with superb tissue contrast that may enable radiation-free catheterization. Simple procedures are the first step towards novel interventional procedures. We aim to perform comprehensive transfemoral diagnostic right heart catheterization in an unselected cohort of patients entirely using MRI guidance. METHODS AND RESULTS: We performed X-ray and MRI-guided transfemoral right heart catheterization in consecutive patients undergoing clinical cardiac catheterization. We sampled both cavae and both pulmonary arteries. We compared success rate, time to perform key steps, and catheter visibility among X-ray and MRI procedures using air-filled or gadolinium-filled balloon-tipped catheters. Sixteen subjects (four with shunt, nine with coronary artery disease, three with other) underwent paired X-ray and MRI catheterization. Complete guidewire-free catheterization was possible in 15 of 16 under both. MRI using gadolinium-filled balloons was at least as successful as X-ray in all procedure steps, more successful than MRI using air-filled balloons, and better than both in entering the left pulmonary artery. Total catheterization time and individual procedure steps required approximately the same amount of time irrespective of image guidance modality. Catheter conspicuity was best under X-ray and next-best using gadolinium-filled MRI balloons. CONCLUSION: In this early experience, comprehensive transfemoral right heart catheterization appears feasible using only MRI for imaging guidance. Gadolinium-filled balloon catheters were more conspicuous than air-filled ones. Further workflow and device enhancement are necessary for clinical adoption.

Ozturk C, Guttman M, McVeigh ER, Lederman RJ. Top Magn Reson Imaging. 2005 Oct;16(5):369-81. Magnetic resonance imaging-guided vascular interventions

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), which provides superior soft-tissue imaging and no known harmful effects, has the potential as an alternative modality to guide various medical interventions. This review will focus on MR-guided endovascular interventions and present its current state and future outlook. In the first technical part, enabling technologies such as developments in fast imaging, catheter devices, and visualization techniques are examined. This is followed by a clinical survey that includes proof-of-concept procedures in animals and initial experience in human subjects. In preclinical experiments, MRI has already proven to be valuable. For example, MRI has been used to guide and track targeted cell delivery into or around myocardial infarctions, to guide atrial septal puncture, and to guide the connection of portal and systemic venous circulations. Several investigational MR-guided procedures have already been reported in patients, such as MR-guided cardiac catheterization, invasive imaging of peripheral artery atheromata, selective intra-arterial MR angiography, and preliminary angioplasty and stent placement. In addition, MR-assisted transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt procedures in patients have been shown in a novel hybrid double-doughnut x-ray/MRI system. Numerous additional investigational human MR-guided endovascular procedures are now underway in several medical centers around the world. There are also significant hurdles: availability of clinical-grade devices, device-related safety issues, challenges to patient monitoring, and acoustic noise during imaging. The potential of endovascular interventional MRI is great because as a single modality, it combines 3-dimensional anatomic imaging, device localization, hemodynamics, tissue composition, and function.

Neizel M, Krämer N, Schütte A, Schnackenburg B, Krüger S, Kelm M, Günther RW, Kühl HP, Krombach GA. Invest Radiol. 2010 Aug;45(8):502-6. doi: 10.1097/RLI.0b013e3181e45578. Magnetic resonance imaging of the cardiac venous system and magnetic resonance-guided intubation of the coronary sinus in swine: a feasibility study.

OBJECTIVES: To visualize the coronary sinus using magnetic resonance (MR), and to demonstrate the feasibility of MR-guided intubation of the cardiac venous system (CVS) in swine. MATERIALS AND METHODS: A total of 6 pigs were investigated. All experiments were performed using an interventional 1.5-Tesla MRI system. The CVS was visualized using an inversion-recovery navigator-gated whole-heart steady-state free-precession sequence after administration of gadobenate dimeglumine contrast agent. The coronary sinus was then intubated under MR-guidance with a passive MR-compatible guidewire modified by incorporation of iron oxide markers for improved visualization and a nonbraided Cobra-catheter. MR-guided interventions were monitored using a steady-state free-precession real-time imaging sequence. Time needed was measured for MR-guided intubation of the CVS and compared with the time needed for fluoroscopy guided intubation of the CVS. RESULTS: Visualization and intubation of the coronary sinus and its site branches was feasible in all cases. Time spent for MR-guided intubation of the CVS was comparable to time spent for fluoroscopy-guided intubation (8.2 +/- 2 minutes vs. 8.3 +/- 1.3 minutes; P = 0.85). CONCLUSIONS: MR-visualization and MR-guided intubation of the coronary sinus and its side branches is feasible. The feasibility of MR-guided intubation of the CVS might have relevance for procedures like cardiac resynchronization therapy and percutaneous transcatheter mitral annuloplasty, requiring improved 3-dimensional knowledge about cardiac vein anatomy in the near future.

Bock M, Wacker FK. J Magn Reson Imaging. 2008 Feb;27(2):326-38. doi: 10.1002/jmri.21271. MR-guided intravascular interventions: techniques and applications.

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) offers several advantages over other imaging modalities that make it an attractive imaging tool for diagnostic and therapeutic procedures. This tremendous potential of MRI has provided the rationale for increased attention toward MR-guided endovascular interventions. MR guidance has been used recently to navigate endovascular catheters and deliver stents, vena cava filters, embolization materials, and septum closure devices. However, its potential goes beyond just copying existing procedures toward the development of new minimally invasive techniques that cannot be performed with conventional guiding techniques. Because of technical limitations and safety issues associated with some of the currently available devices, a limited number of clinical studies have been performed so far. The overall success for this developing field requires considerable interdisciplinary research within both the interventional and the MR community. Only through a combined effort can this complex technology find its way into clinical practice. This review discusses the hardware and software improvements that have helped to advance endovascular interventions under MR imaging guidance from a pure research tool to become a clinical reality. In addition, technical and safety issues specific to endovascular MR image guidance will be described and practical applications will be shown that take advantage of the benefits of MR for endovascular int


Radiation, imaging and cancer risk

Andrew J. Einstein and Juhani Knuuti. Cardiac imaging: does radiation matter? European heart Journal 2011, doi:10.1093/eurheartj/ehr281

The use of ionizing radiation in cardiovascular imaging has generated considerable discussion. Radiation should not be considered in isolation,but rather in the context of a careful examination of the benefits, risks, and costs of cardiovascular imaging. Such consideration requires an understanding of some fundamental aspects of the biology, physics, epidemiology, and terminology germane to radiation, as well as principles of radiological protection. This paper offers a concise, contemporary perspective on these areas by addressing pertinent questions relating to radiation and its application to cardiac imaging.

Hammer GP, Seidenbusch MC, Schneider K, Regulla DF, Zeeb H, Spix C, Blettner M. Radiat Res. 2009 Apr;171(4):504-12. doi: 10.1667/RR1575.1. A cohort study of childhood cancer incidence after postnatal diagnostic X-ray exposure.

Ionizing radiation is an established cause of cancer, yet little is known about the health effects of doses from diagnostic examinations in children. The risk of childhood cancer was studied in a cohort of 92.957 children who had been examined with diagnostic X rays in a large German hospital during 1976-2003. Radiation doses were reconstructed using the individual dose area product and other exposure parameters, together with conversion coefficients developed specifically for the medical devices and standards used at the radiology department. Newly diagnosed cancers occurring between 1980 and 2006 were determined through record linkage to the German Childhood Cancer Registry. The median radiation dose was 7 microSv. Eight-seven incident cases were found in the cohort: 33 leukemia, 13 lymphoma, 10 central nervous system tumors, and 31 other tumors. The standardized incidence ratio (SIR) for all cancers was 0.99 (95% CI: 0.79-1.22). No trend in the incidence of total cancer, leukemia or solid tumors with increasing radiation dose was observed in the SIR analysis or in the multivariate Poisson regression. Risk did not differ significantly in girls and boys. Overall, while no increase in cancer risk with diagnostic radiation was observed, the results are compatible with a broad range of risk estimates.

 Kleinerman RA. Pediatr Radiol. 2006 Sep;36 Suppl 2:121-5. Cancer risks following diagnostic and therapeutic radiation exposure in children.

The growing use of interventional and fluoroscopic imaging in children represents a tremendous benefit for the diagnosis and treatment of benign conditions. Along with the increasing use and complexity of these procedures comes concern about the cancer risk associated with ionizing radiation exposure to children. Children are considerably more sensitive to the carcinogenic effects of ionizing radiation than adults, and children have a longer life expectancy in which to express risk. Numerous epidemiologic cohort studies of childhood exposure to radiation for treatment of benign diseases have demonstrated radiation-related risks of cancer of the thyroid, breast, brain and skin, as well as leukemia. Many fewer studies have evaluated cancer risk following diagnostic radiation exposure in children. Although radiation dose for a single procedure might be low, pediatric patients often receive repeated examinations over time to evaluate their conditions, which could result in relatively high cumulative doses. Several cohort studies of girls and young women subjected to multiple diagnostic radiation exposures have been informative about increased mortality from breast cancer with increasing radiation dose, and case-control studies of childhood leukemia and postnatal diagnostic radiation exposure have suggested increased risks with an increasing number of examinations. Only two long-term follow-up studies of cancer following cardiac catheterization in childhood have been conducted, and neither reported an overall increased risk of cancer. Most cancers can be induced by radiation, and a linear dose-response has been noted for most solid cancers. Risks of radiation-related cancer are greatest for those exposed early in life, and these risks appear to persist throughout life.




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