MRI of the bladder: what does the survey?
Diseases of the bladder are very common and can be caused by a variety of factors: infection, abnormalities of the nervous and hormonal systems, use of substances, irritating the mucous membrane, tumors. Due to the large number of possible reasons for these diseases are poorly diagnosed. To assign the correct treatment, medical specialists prescribe patients to various tests and studies, among which the most informative is MRI of the bladder.
Diagnosis of diseases of the urinary system
Traditional methods of diagnosis include listening to the complaints of the patient, taking a history and examining symptoms. However, for their basis is rarely possible to accurately identify disease. In most cases, a lot of useful information brings clinical and bacteriological analysis of urine, which may contain traces of pathogenic microorganisms, pus, blood, salt crystals. But often these data are not sufficient.
To unambiguously identify the cause of the disease, apply modern high informative methods of visualization. Among them the most widely used technique of ultrasonic research (ultrasonography or sonography). With its help the image of the internal organs which have different acoustic impedance and density. The ultrasound procedure is available, however, is the precision shows only the General outlines of the bodies (and the tumors).
There are also invasive diagnostic methods that require penetration into the body of the patient. One of them – cystoscopy – allows you to visually assess the condition of the bladder from the inside. It uses a special camera.
In an effort to obtain more accurate information about the disease, the doctor, choosing studies, to take into account also their accessibility (cost) and, moreover, safety. Some procedures such as x-ray irradiation, it is impossible to do often.
Magnetic resonance imaging
The study is based on the phenomenon of resonance of nuclei of hydrogen atoms in a magnetic field, is one of the most informative. It is used to get the most accurate image of the affected organs, identify the smallest tumors.
However, despite such impressive results, MRI is used much less frequently than we would like. Case in relative complexity and cost of the procedure. For its implementation requires special equipment – high field magnetic resonance imaging, specially trained staff and significant monetary costs. Therefore, MRI of the bladder and other organs is carried out only in complex cases, usually to confirm and clarify the results of ultrasound or computed tomography.
The visualization is based on the ability of hydrogen atoms in body tissues to absorb the energy entering the magnetic field, and radiate, leaving him. The computer processes the radiation picked up by sensors, forming a three-dimensional image that shows the cut body. The bones in the images are not displayed. Photos received are reviewed by the specialist based on the results put the final diagnosis and prescribes the treatment.
The advantages of the study
- Security. During the procedure, the patient is not affected by ionizing radiation. Magnetic resonance imaging can be carried out repeatedly within a short time period, which is especially important to control the growth of malignant tumors.
- Higher resolution and accuracy. Technology shows thin slices of the body. Thanks to this type of CT can detect abnormalities at the earliest stages and to carry out a successful treatment.
- Non-invasive, minimal discomfort for the patient, painless.
When is MRI of the bladder?
MRI of the bladder is indispensable in urologic Oncology, when there is a suspicion of malignant lesions of the body. The study allows to detect the tumor and to determine its location with millimeter precision. This increases the chances of early detection of cancer and its successful treatment. In addition MRI is used to monitor the tumor development dynamics, documenting the effectiveness (or ineffectiveness) of the treatment.
Imaging is carried out with various abnormalities of the tissues of the genitourinary system, congenital or acquired, and to confirm the diagnosis before prescribing radiation therapy or surgical treatment.
MRI of the bladder in most cases is part of the comprehensive imaging of the pelvic organs or the excretory system (kidney MRI).
If necessary to improve the accuracy of the study in the patient’s blood before the procedure, contrast medium injected. Spreading through the bloodstream, it is localized in the pathological tumor, allowing to estimate its size and location.
Any imaging studies of the bladder is recommended when the organ is filled with. Therefore it is not necessary before the procedure to visit the toilet, and even better to drink a liter of still water. But the gut should be emptied, for this purpose is the cleansing enema.
In addition, no special measures for preparation of the patient for magnetic resonance imaging does not exist. However, it is recommended for several days to avoid eating foods that trigger intense flatulence and irritation of the mucous membranes of internal organs (bread, dairy products, soft drinks).
Before entering the scanner, you must remove all metal jewelry (rings, earrings, chains). There is a weight limit (no more than 120-130 kg).
The patient is in a horizontal position (on the back). For the duration of the study, it must keep maximum stickiness, in this case the images will be the clearest. Duration – about half an hour (with the contrast – a little bit longer). Interpreting the results the specialist takes much more time.
Contraindications to magnetic resonance imaging
- It is impossible to conduct an MRI if the patient has a pacemaker because the magnetic field variations in procedure can affect normal operation.
- Any ferromagnetic or electronic implants are also an absolute contraindication to the study.
- With caution and with certain conditions it is possible to conduct an MRI in decompensated heart failure, nervous and mental diseases, General condition of the patient.
- It is quite difficult to scan patients with claustrophobia, as during the procedure, they need to be in a closed tunnel scanner.
- Some dangerous are tattoos made with dyes containing metal particles. When exposed to magnetic fields arise from burns of varying severity.
- With contrast magnetic resonance imaging to the number of added contraindications individual hypersensitivity to the components of contrast, anemia, impaired renal function.
- Pregnant women in the first trimester is not recommended MRI. On any pregnancy not carried out the procedure with injection of contrast, as the substance penetrates through the barrier of the placenta.
Summing up, it should be noted that magnetic resonance imaging of the bladder at the moment – the most informative research in urology. Its wider use would significantly improve the statistics of successful treatment in this field of medicine.