Author(s)
Eric L. Foster, John W. Arnold, Mihaela Jekic, Jacob Bender, Vijay Balasubramanian, Paaladinesh Thavendiranathan, Jennifer A. Dickerson, Subha V. Raman, and Orlando P. Simonetti
Date
2012-03-13
Source
Magnetic Resonance in Medicine. 2012 March; 67(3): 880–889.

This article describes an MR-safe treadmill that enables cardiovascular exercise stress testing adjacent to the MRI system, facilitating cardiac MR imaging immediately following exercise stress. The treadmill was constructed of non-ferromagnetic components utilizing a hydraulic power system. Computer control ensured precise execution of the standard Bruce treadmill protocol commonly used for cardiovascular exercise stress testing. The treadmill demonstrated no evidence of ferromagnetic attraction and did not affect image quality. Treadmill performance met design specifications both inside and outside the MRI environment. Ten healthy volunteers performed the Bruce protocol with the treadmill positioned adjacent to the MRI table. Upon reaching peak stress (98% ± 8% of age-predicted maximum heart rate (APMHR)), the subjects lay down directly on the MRI table, a cardiac array coil was placed, an intravenous line connected, and stress cine and perfusion imaging performed. Cine imaging commenced on average within 24 ± 4 s and was completed within 40 ± 7 s of the end of exercise. Subject heart rates were 86% ± 9% of APMHR at the start of imaging and 81% ± 9% of APMHR upon completion of cine imaging. The MRI compatible treadmill was shown to operate safely and effectively in the MRI environment.

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