How clear are MRIs for people with pacemakers?

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) can be clear and unobscured for people with pacemakers. Researchers report that, for imaging the heart in patients with cardiac devices, using a wideband late gadolinium enhancement (LGE) technique – MRI augmented with a contrasting agent – for people with pacemakers or implanted cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs) dramatically improves scar visualization and assessment.

MRI visualization is the best way to detect myocardial scarring in the heart, but the protocol has been especially challenging for people with pacemakers or ICDs. Implanted devices can cause hyperintensity (HI) artifacts – bright-white spotting – compromising the image and masking the scar tissue.

Whereas the metal in the pacemaker or ICD box causes the MRI frequency to drift outside of the useful range with standard LGE technique, “wideband” captures these frequencies, which would otherwise be filtered out.
This content originally appeared online at UCLA Health

Continue Learning about Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

Where can I find information on stand-up MRIs?
Univ. of Nev. School of Medicine, Family MedicineUniv. of Nev. School of Medicine, Family Medicine
Web sites such as have information regarding the stand-up MRI, or upright MRI....
More Answers
What should I expect during magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)?
Dr. Egilius L. Spierings, MDDr. Egilius L. Spierings, MD
For a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan, you must lie motionless inside a large tube located...
More Answers
What is a shoulder MRI scan?
A shoulder MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scan is a procedure that creates pictures of the interna...
More Answers
What to Expect From an MRI
What to Expect From an MRI

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.