Clinical studies suggest that magnetic resonance first-pass (MRFP) perfusion imaging is comparable to current diagnostic tests that are used clinically for the assessment of myocardial perfusion. In addition, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) perfusion imaging is a noninvasive method for determining myocardial blood flow. The spatial resolution (in-plane spatial resolution < 3 mm) is sufficient to differentiate between subendocardial perfusion and subepicardial perfusion. The measurement can be repeated regularly without any adverse effects for the patient. MRI perfusion measurements can be combined with the evaluation of global function and regional wall thickening. Currently, there is no other imaging technique that offers similar advantages. The MRI perfusion measurements can be carried out during baseline conditions and during maximal hyperemia induced with either adenosine or dipyridamole. The ratio of the measured myocardial blood flows provides an estimate of the absolute and relative myocardial perfusion reserve. The perfusion reserve determined with MRFP imaging is a quantitative measure for the assessment of the collateral-dependent myocardial flow. Based on the available data using MRFP perfusion imaging, the current clinical first-line perfusion imaging tests are going to be challenged in the near future. J. Magn. Reson. Imaging 1999;10:676-685.
Copyright 1999 Wiley-Liss, Inc.