Silmara Gusso, Carlo Salvador, Paul Hofman, Wayne Cutfield, James C Baldi, Andrew Taberner, Poul Nielse
BioMedical Engineering OnLine

Background: Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is an important tool for cardiac research, and it is frequently used for resting cardiac assessments. However, research into non-pharmacological stress cardiac evaluation is limited.

Methods: We aimed to design a portable and relatively inexpensive MRI cycle ergometer capable of continuously measuring pedalling workload while patients exercise to maintain target heart rates.

Results: We constructed and tested an MRI-compatible cycle ergometer for a 1.5 T MRI scanner. Resting and sub-maximal exercise images (at 110 beats per minute) were successfully obtained in 8 healthy adults.

Conclusions: The MRI-compatible cycle ergometer constructed by our research group enabled cardiac assessments at fixed heart rates, while continuously recording power output by directly measuring pedal force and crank rotation.

Keywords: Cycle ergometer, Left ventricular function, Magnetic resonance imaging

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