Background: Noninvasive measurement of absolute coronary arterial flow and coronary flow reserve would be of considerable use in the diagnosis and management of patients with coronary artery disease. Phase-contrast magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has been used to measure flow in a variety of vessels. The goal of the present study was to determine if MRI measurements of coronary artery flow in a single breath-hold can be used to determine flow reserve and the severity of pericardial stenosis. Methods and Results: In eight mongrel dogs, a closed chest model of partial left anterior descending coronary artery (LAD) occlusion was created. Coronary flows in the left circumflex artery (LCx) and LAD were measured at rest and during adenosine infusion using velocity-encoded, breath-hold MRI and perivascular ultrasound (US) flowmeters. MRI measurements of absolute coronary flow and coronary flow reserve were highly correlated with US (r=.96 and .94, respectively). Flow reserve measured in the constricted LAD was significantly lower than that in the unconstricted LCx by both US (P=.002) and MRI (P=.011). Conclusions: MRI measurements of coronary flow and flow reserve were in good agreement with US measurements. In addition, MRI measurements of coronary flow reserve successfully discriminated stenotic from normal vessels. These results indicate that MRI is a useful method for the noninvasive assessment of coronary flow and stenosis.
- blood flow
- magnetic resonance imaging
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
- Physiology (medical)