MRI of neck vessels — what shows?


The modern rhythm of life associated with a huge number of stresses and nervous overloads that cause headache. In addition, you may develop vascular diseases that cause nausea, pain in the head and dizziness. In order to find out the cause of unpleasant conditions performed MRI of neck vessels.

Magnetic resonance angiography is the most informative method of research that allows you to create three-dimensional image of the selected area, in this case vessels of the neck. The method is based on the phenomenon of nuclear magnetic resonance: hydrogen atoms contained in the tissue are excited and emit energy which is recorded the apparatus, transforming it into a precise image. Using MRI it is possible to scan human tissue by using thin sections and various planes, which allows you to diagnose the smallest of pathology in the early stages of development.

Magnetic resonance angiography is considered a safe method, but has strict limitations to scan and neglect can lead to serious consequences. It is very important to respond in detail to the questions of the physician during history-taking and specify all operative procedures.

Mr imaging of blood vessels of the cervical spine is contraindicated in the following cases:

  • Implanted in the body of the patient, the pacemaker, insulin pump, vascular clips, a cochlear implant. Powerful electromagnetic waves can disrupt the pacemaker and to move the clip, increasing the likelihood of brain bleeding several times.
  • Set compression-distraction Ilizarov.
  • Plates and wires installed at osteosynthesis.
  • When performing Mr angiography with contrast – Allergy to contrast material.
  • Exceeding the allowable body weight.
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These contraindications are absolute, meaning the study is strictly prohibited. There are relative contraindications, that is, scanning is better not to, but it is possible when absolutely necessary:

  • The first trimester of pregnancy.
  • Claustrophobia in the patient.
  • The presence of the body tattoos, made with metallic paints.
  • Unstable mental state of the patient, hyperkinesis (study requires the patient to remain fully immobile throughout the procedure).
  • The serious condition of the patient.
  • Asthma heart, kidney or liver failure.
  • The patient is on life support.

The list of contraindications is rather extensive. Virtually all of the items associated with the presence in the body of the metal contamination is caused when the MRI machine is a giant magnet, electromagnetic waves which can heat and move the metal, which can lead to burns and lacerations.

Do I need to prepare for the exam?

Scanning of the cervical spine, like ultrasound, does not require special patient preparation. One should take all the necessary documents – a passport, a patient card or medical history, the procedure. It is best to take care of clothes, not restrict movement and without metal elements.

What are the different types of Mr-imaging of the neck vessels?

In addition to conventional MRI to study the blood vessels of the cervical spine can be performed magnetic resonance angiography with contrast. Before the test the patient into a vein injected substance on the basis of gadolinium, which «stain» the blood of the patient and enhances the visualization of even the smallest structural abnormalities. Mr-angiography with contrast shows the areas of narrowing of the arteries, small tumors, to evaluate their structure and limits with millimeter precision. In addition to tumors, the contrast agent helps in the diagnosis spread of metastases detect small vascular abnormalities.

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What is the best method in the diagnosis of vascular pathologies?

For diagnosing the condition of arteries and veins have developed several techniques: MRI, ultrasound Doppler (Doppler ultrasound), CT (computed tomography) and x-ray.

Ultrasound diagnostics (sonography) is based on the Doppler effect shows the arteries and veins and blood flow in them. Unlike MRI, ULTRASOUND dopplerography allows to obtain only a two-dimensional image and leaves a small pathology.

Computed tomography in the physical exposure to ionizing radiation. Cheaper method, is not much inferior to the informative value of magnetic resonance imaging. It is used when there are contraindications to MRI arteries and veins. More informative than ultrasound.

Mr angiography- the kind of research which should preferably be used in the study of neck vessels. Unlike the ultrasound method to visualize even small anomalies.

X-ray to scan the blood vessels of the cervical spine is not applicable, as not showing Magadana and vascular structures.

Magnetic resonance angiography of vessels of the cervical spine is the most accurate method, better visualizes small pathology and is appointed for a detailed examination of existing violations. Most often it is assigned to resolve contentious clinical situations, in cases where other survey methods proved to be uninformative.

Ultrasound is appointed in cases when the clinical picture is clear and is required to confirm the diagnosis. In many cases, you can get a cheaper method – an ultrasound or CT scan. This problem is solved by the attending physician taking into account all symptoms and indications.