MRI scans may help predict heart attack or stroke

18 June 2013

New health research from Dallas County, Texas has revealed the lifesaving benefits of MRI scans. According to researchers, plaque in the vessels and wall thickness of the abdominal aorta - both of which can be determined through MRI readings - could predict a patient’s risk of heart attack or stroke. In combination with a cardiac catheterisation, which examines the functionality of the heart and the extent of vessel blockage, this data could be used to predict risk of heart problems.

Lead author, Dr Christopher Maroules, said: “MRI is a promising tool for quantifying atherosclerosis (plaque buildup) through plaque and arterial wall thickness measurements.”  

As atherosclerosis worsens, the artery narrows, limiting blood flow. In turn, this puts patients at an increased risk of critical incidents.

By catching atherosclerosis in its early stages, patients can take steps to reduce damage. Although complete reversal is not yet possible, a regimen of statins and cholesterol-reducing medications may reduce plaque buildup.

Posted by Jeanette Royston

Health News is provided by Adfero in collaboration with Spire Healthcare. Please note that all copy above is ©Adfero Ltd. and does not reflect views or opinions of Spire Healthcare unless explicitly stated. Additional comments on the page from individual Spire consultants do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of other consultants or Spire Healthcare.

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