Pediatric Heart Expert Forum
Star Edwards Heartvalve
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Star Edwards Heartvalve

I got a Star Edwards Heart Valve in 1977. Now I have to undergo a magnetic resonance tomography of my right ear.
Is this possible with this aortic Star Edwards Valve?
Sincerly yours
ferdl
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773637_tn?1327450515
Dear Ferdl,

For our other readers, the Starr-Edwards prosthetic valve is one of the older mechanical valves.  It has a steel cage on top of a ring.  Inside the cage is a ball that moves back and forth, closing and opening the orifice of the valve to let blood move out of the heart.  Historically, there were some theoretical concerns specifically regarding the older Starr-Edwards prosthetic valves being exposed to the magnetic force in an MRI.  However, recent research has demonstrated that the overall force generated with the valve is less than that created by the heart, and thus allows the valve to be an acceptable valve in MRI exposure, even with the 3 Tesla magnets (the stronger magnets used today).  Obviously, the MRI cannot be used to assess the valve itself, as the metal will cause a significant amount of local image interference.  But, having an MRI of your head should cause no problems from a heart standpoint.
2 Comments
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952618_tn?1246291113
Thanks for your prompt answer!
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The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
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