The great progress of Cardiology in our days is based on the new technologies that allowed the noninvasive diagnosis and follow-up of various cardiovascular entities. Between them, the development of new imaging modalities facilitated a better understanding of the pathophysiologic background of cardiovascular diseases.
Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance (CMR), a noninvasive modality without radiation, is included in the new “magic world”. CMR has been successfully used for diagnosis and treatment follow-up of various cardiac diseases. Its great advantage is that it can provide noninvasively and without radiation direct information regarding all cardiac tissues. In contrast to echocardiography, CMR is operator independent and has excellent reproducibility, and can provide in the same examination information about function, perfusion, tissue characterization.
Before CMR, our knowledge of myocardial edema/fibrosis was indirect, based on wall motion assessment, provided by echocardiography. The development of native T1, T2 mapping allowed the assessment of myocardial edema, indicating the acuity of myocardial disease, which was unavailable prior to CMR. Furthermore, CMR using late gadolinium enhanced images (LGE) allowed the assessment of various types of replacement fibrosis, which is characteristic of various cardiovascular diseases. Finally, native T1 mapping and extracellular volume fraction (ECV) provides information that is comparable to histology about diffuse myocardial fibrosis.
Dear reader, in the current issue of our journal we welcome you in this “magic world” and we promise to guide you to a better understanding of Cardiovascular Diseases, based on detailed pathophysiologic information, provided by CMR.
We hope that you will enjoy the magic trip to the “Ithaca” of knowledge.
Prof. Sophie I. Mavrogeni
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