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What is a magnetic resonance angiogram (MRA)?

Magnetic resonance angiography (MRA) is similar to magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), which uses a powerful magnetic field to take highly detailed pictures of soft tissues such as the brain and heart, but uses an injected contrast dye to show blood flowing in vessels. In addition, it can assess whether brain blood flow is normal.
When magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is used to diagnose problems in the blood vessels, the test is often called a magnetic resonance angiogram (MRA). MRA is a type of imaging; that is, it creates images of the blood vessels so a physician can identify problems.

An MRA uses magnetic fields and radio waves to produce two- or three-dimensional images of blood vessels. These images provide doctors a more precise assessment of the severity and location of any blockages in the arteries. It may be combined as part of a cardiac MRI that will obtain information as to how your heart is functioning.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.