January 16, 2018 – MRI and Devices


Anchor lead: If you have an implanted cardiac device, you most likely can have an MRI scan safely, Elizabeth Tracey reports

Implanted cardiac devices are lifesavers, restarting the heart or keeping it beating correctly, but when it comes to the need for an MRI scan, concerns arise. Now a new study by Henry Halperin, a cardiologist at Johns Hopkins, and colleagues demonstrates that such scans can be conducted safely.

Halperin: It’s estimated by the device companies that 50-75% of people who get an implanted device will ultimately have an indication for an MRI. The reason you want an MRI it is the imaging modality of choice for a number of diseases, especially neurological diseases.  :18

Halperin says for most such devices, safeguards are already in place.

Halperin: And it turns out the same technology that went into protecting pacemakers and implanted defibrillators from the normal environmental hazards that you see from power stations, radio waves, microwave ovens, cell phones all this kind of stuff, it’s the same technology that’s needed to protect against MRI scans.  :19

At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.