Cardiac Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

Purpose of Test: Cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a diagnostic procedure that uses a combination of a large magnet, radiofrequencies, and a computer to produce detailed still and moving images of the heart (there is no radiation). This non-invasive, safe method scans the body to produce information on the anatomy of the heart and its vessels, as well as moving images of the heart as it is beating. This enables the physician to detect abnormalities in the heart's chambers, irregularities in the flow of blood through the heart and abnormalities of the cardiovascular system, including cardiac tumors, disease of cardiac valves, cardiac hypertrophy (enlarged heart) and others. At Weill Cornell, we offer state-of-the-art cardiac MRI imaging that can reveal areas of heart tissue that have been damaged by myocardial infarction (heart attack) and regions that are not receiving an adequate blood supply.

Location: Starr Pavillon, 520 East 70th Street, J-0, New York, NY 10021
(Between York Ave & East River. After entering the building, it is to the left of the Security Guard Station)

Arrival Time: Plan to arrive 10 minutes prior to appointment time

To reschedule: (212) 746-6000

Duration of Test: ~ 1 hour

Preparation for Test:

  1. Wear something that is comfortable and easy to remove. Please do not wear anything with metal for the exam such as clothing with zippers or snaps. You may be asked not to eat or drink anything for 4 hours prior to the exam.
  2. If you have any type of electrical, mechanical, or surgical implant within you, please notify our schedulers at the time your appointment is made and also the staff when checking in. Examples include cardiac pacemakers or defibrillators, some joint replacements that use metal pins, and any nails, pins or wires.
  3. If you have been given a copy of the prescription for your examination, it is important that you bring it with you on the day of your appointment.
  4. You should inform the technologist if there is any possibility that you are pregnant or if you are currently breastfeeding.

What should I expect during the test?

  1. When you arrive in our office, you will be asked to complete registration forms that will allow us to collect your medical history and any necessary insurance information. One of our technologists will escort you to the changing area.
  2. You will be asked to remove and place your electronic devices, wallet, ATM/credit cards, metro-card, watch, jewelry, belt, hairpins, eyeglasses, hearing aid or any removable dental work into the provided lockers.
  3. Some MRI examinations require the use of contrast material, sometimes called "x-ray dye” (even though an MRI is not an X-ray). If contrast is required, a skilled nurse or technologist will start an intravenous (I.V.), usually in the arm or hand, prior to the examination. The I.V. will be removed immediately afterward.
  4. Please notify the nurse/technologist if you have a history of kidney disease, especially if you are on dialysis.
  5. Before you enter the MRI scanning room, a technologist will review a safety questionnaire with you. We understand that this may seem redundant but your safety is our first priority. Once the technologist is assured that it is safe to proceed, he or she will escort you into the scanning room and help you get onto the MRI table. Once positioned, it is extremely important that you remain still during the examination. This will allow for clear images and will help us complete your test as quickly as possible.


A Program of the Dalio Institute of Cardiovascular Imaging
at the NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital
428 East 72nd Street Suite 300
New York, NY 10021 Map This P: (646) 962-4278 (HART) F: (646) 962-0188