Determining the risks of clinically indicated nonthoracic magnetic resonance imaging at 1.5 T for patients with pacemakers and implantable cardioverter-defibrillators: rationale and design of the MagnaSafe Registry

Am Heart J. 2013 Mar;165(3):266-72. doi: 10.1016/j.ahj.2012.12.004. Epub 2013 Jan 28.


Background: Until recently, the presence of a permanent pacemaker or an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator has been a relative contraindication for the performance of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). A number of small studies have shown that MRI can be performed with minimal risk when patients are properly monitored and device programming is modified appropriately for the procedure. However, the risk of performing MRI for patients with implanted cardiac devices has not been sufficiently evaluated to advocate routine clinical use. The aim of the present protocol is to prospectively determine the rate of adverse clinical events and device parameter changes in patients with implanted non-MRI-conditional cardiac devices undergoing clinically indicated nonthoracic MRI at 1.5 T.

Methods: The MagnaSafe Registry is a multicenter, prospective cohort study of up to 1500 MRI examinations in patients with pacemakers or implantable cardioverter-defibrillators implanted after 2001 who undergo clinically indicated nonthoracic MRI following a specific protocol to ensure that preventable potential adverse events are mitigated. Adverse events and changes in device parameter measurements that may be associated with the imaging procedure will be documented.

Results: Through August 2012, 701 MRI studies have been performed, representing 47% of the total target enrollment.

Conclusions: The results of this registry will provide additional documentation of the risk of MRI and will further validate a clinical protocol for screening and the performance of clinically indicated MRI for patients with implanted cardiac devices.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Cohort Studies
  • Contraindications
  • Defibrillators, Implantable*
  • Equipment Failure
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging* / adverse effects
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging* / methods
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pacemaker, Artificial*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Registries*
  • Research Design
  • Risk
  • Young Adult