Cardiac Magnetic Resonance Imaging in a Patient with Implantable Cardioverter-Defibrillator


Address for reprints: Ariel Roguin, M.D., Ph.D., The Johns Hopkins Hospital, Division of Cardiology, Traylor 903, 720 Rutland Ave., Baltimore, MD 21205. Fax: (410) 614-1980; e-mail:


The presence of pacemakers and implantable cardioverter-defibrillators (ICD) is considered historically a contraindication to magnetic resonance (MR) imaging. This image modality has unparalleled soft-tissue imaging capabilities, and many consider it as the image of choice for patients with arrhythmogenic right ventricular dysplasia/cardiomyopathy (ARVD/C). ICDs are now smaller, with less magnetic materials and improved electromagnetic interference protection. We tested modern ICDs for heat, force, function and image distortion and found that several of them may indeed be MRI safe. We report here a patient who was suspected of ARVD/C, underwent ICD implantation based on MR safety testing, and underwent intentionally scheduled follow-up cardiac MR imaging. This is the description of a patient with an ICD who had planned MRI scanning. The scan was safe and most of the MRI images were of high quality.