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Cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)


What is cardiac MRI?

Cardiac MRI scanCardiac (heart) MRI helps:

  • evaluate the anatomy (structure) and function of the heart chambers, valves, major vessels, and surrounding structures such as the pericardium (the fluid filled sac that surrounds the heart)
  • diagnose a variety of cardiovascular (heart and/or blood vessel) disorders such as tumours, infections, and inflammatory conditions
  • detect and evaluate the effects of coronary artery disease such as limited blood flow to the heart muscle and scarring within the heart muscle after heart attack
  • plan a patient's treatment for cardiovascular disorders
  • monitor a patient's progression over time
  • evaluate the anatomy of the heart and blood vessels in children with congenital (present from birth) heart disease.

Using cardiac MRI, doctors can:

    • examine the size of the heart chambers and the thickness of the heart wall
    • determine the extent of myocardial (heart muscle) damage and effect on pump function caused by a heart attack or progressive heart disease
    • detect the buildup of plaque and blockages in blood vessel.
    • assess a patient's recovery following treatment
    • evaluate the heart anatomy, pump function, heart valve function and vascular blood flow both before and after surgical repair of congenital cardiovascular disease in children and adults.

The cardiac MRI service at Guy's and St Thomas'

Who's who

  • Head of imaging sciences division: Professor Reza Razavi
  • Adult cardiac MRI services lead: Dr Amedeo Chiribiri
  • MRI clinical research facilities manager: Louise Shalaby Boutrus
  • Director of imaging sciences: Bernadette Cronin 

Our facilities and services

    • three dedicated MRI scanners (one 3T and two 1.5T scanners) able to perform the most up-to-date high quality and high resolution stress perfusion     scans
    • a modern large bore 1.5T scanner, combining the latest digital technology with a more comfortable experience for patient and higher throughput
    • over 3,000 clinical CMR scans performed a year
    • emergency slots for inpatients available five days a week
    • collaboration with research including but not limited to perfusion, 4D flow, atrial fibrillation, cardiac ablation and T1 mapping
    • provide tertiary (specialist) cardiac MRI services for hospitals in the south east of England including: Brighton, Maidstone, Queen Elizabeth, The Queen Mary, Lewisham, Dartford and Princess Royal University Hospital.


We accept referrals from secondary and tertiary cardiac centres.

To make a referral to our cardiac MRI service, complete and download the referral form (Word 1.7Mb) and fax or email to:

For referral queries, please call 020 7188 5441.