ESCR 2015 / P-0038
MRI of the Pericardium: What do we have to know? What do we have to look for?
Congress: ESCR 2015
Poster No.: P-0038
Type: Scientific Poster
Keywords: Anatomy, Cardiac, MR-Functional imaging, MR-Diffusion/Perfusion, Education, Cysts, Congenital, Pathology
Authors: C. Saborido Avila, M. Rodríguez Álvarez, A. M. Afonso Centeno, B. Nieto Baltar, S. Barreiro Villalustre; VIGO/ES


  1. It is mandatory for the radiologist to know the normal anatomy,variants and the pathologic processes that may affect the pericardium and the MR protocols used to accurately study the pericardium.
  2. MRI can study the whole pericardium to show its morphology and approximate its histology by evaluation of the signal intensity.
  3. MRI offers a correct assessment of pericardial effusion,distribution, presence of loculations and content.
  4. MRI offers a functional assessment of the impact of the pericardial disease
  5. MRI is essential in cases  the echocardiographic information is insufficient, difficult interpret or there is disagreement with the clinic and the patients with poor acoustic window, with loculated effusions, small or difficult to access ultrasound.
  6. MRI is the technique of choice to distinguish constrictive pericarditis from restrictive myocardiopathy. Both have similar symptoms but a different treatment.
  7. The main characteristic imaging of constrictive pericarditis is the rigidity of the pericardium.
  8. A normal pericardium thickness not exclude constrictive pericarditis.
  9. The paradoxical movement of the interventricular septum is usually present in pericardial constriction and it is more marked in inspiration.
  10. The fast accumulation of small amounts of fluid  can cause  a substantial elevation in pericardial pressure and causes tamponade.


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