Valvular heart disease (VHD) refers to a wide spectrum of cardiac disorders that affect a large number of patients. Echocardiography is still considered the pivotal imaging method to evaluate the cardiac valves. However, echocardiography has some intrinsic limitations due to operator dependence and patient habitus. In the last two decades three-dimensional techniques such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and computed tomography (CT) have provided valuable assessment of VHD. MRI overcomes the limitation of the poor acoustic window of echocardiography without ionizing radiation. Nowadays, MRI aims to be considered as the reference standard for imaging cardiac valves because of the improved morphological visualization and reproducible assessment of ventricular volume, mass, and function. CT can display the morphologic features of valves and allow their functional assessment in the setting of congenital and acquired disorders. Moreover, CT angiography may be performed to rule out coronary artery disease in presurgical planning and to follow up patients with prosthetic valves.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)