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British Heart Foundation
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MRI Scan


Question - Can a MRI perfusion scan diagnosis Microvascular Angina ?

Because I’ve been informed it can, and I been informed it can’t 🤔

4 Replies


It depends on the underlying cause of the Microvascular angina.

If due to the inability of the blood vessels to dilate Microvascular dysfunction probably yes.

If due to spasms no.

The MRI results are dependent on the age and make of the machine, the computer algorithms used finally the interpretation of the results by a skilled and experienced Imaging Cardiologist.

Imaging Cardiologists are quite different from their Interventional colleagues.....many are women

You might enjoy this article from a BHF funded researcher Prof Vanessa Ferreira at Oxford.



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I see 🤓, putting the research aside. Current mainstream cardiology diagnosis of MVA at centers of excellence for example; ( Papworth & Brompton) is through perfusion scan then ?



However a knowledgeable up to speed Cardiologist can diagnose MVA by symptoms. It just takes time and the Cardiologist needs to listen well and attentively to their patient!

The problem is that the treatment for MVA and Vasospastic angina are different and variable to each patient.

MRIs usually miss vasospastic angina.

Beta blockers are commonly prescribed as first choice by Cardiologists for MVA which will make vasospastic angina worse.

I ended up in CCU for 5 days when prescribed beta blockers before I had my angiogram with acytelcholine confirming the cause of my Vasospastic and Microvascular angina.

As yet there is no reliable widely available non invasive test for both Vasospastic and Microvascular angina.

There is a big debate amongst the Interventional and Imaging Cardiologists about which technique is better. CT angiograms are beginning to replace invasive angiograms.


Thankyou 🤱🧚‍♀️


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