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    Getting MRI and CT Scans

    Contact your doctor if you have any questions about how specific equipment will interact with your implanted medical device.

    Getting MRI and CT Scans

    If you have a pacemaker or an ICD

    You should know that there are two types of pacemakers.

    Some newer pacemakers are called MRI (or MR) conditional. This means that they are designed to allow you to safely undergo an MRI scan under set conditions, due to safeguards in the system’s design that protect it from the risks a non-MRI conditional system might face. You should have been advised and given a special identification card if you have an MRI conditional pacemaker system.

    With traditional pacemakers, MRI scans can pose associated device-related risks. The extremely strong magnetic fields used in MRI procedures could affect the pacemaker’s normal functions; therefore, patients with traditional pacemakers should not have MRIs.

    However, you can safely have a CT scan, chest and dental x-rays, diagnostic ultrasound, mammography and fluoroscopy.

    Learn more about how your device may be affected by electromagnetic fields

    If you have a CRT-P or a CRT-D

    You should not have an MRI. The extremely strong magnetic fields used in the diagnostic procedure could impair the CRT device’s normal functions.

    However, you can safely have a CT scan, chest and dental x-rays, diagnostic ultrasound, mammography and fluoroscopy.

    Learn more about how your device may be affected by electromagnetic fields

    If you have a heart valve

    Tell the doctor that you have an artificial heart valve and show your ID card, which contains important information about how to perform an MRI safely with your heart valve.

    Learn more

    What about airport, courtroom or other security areas?

    The amount of metal used in most St. Jude Medical implanted medical devices is very small. It is usually not enough to set off the metal detectors; if it does, simply show security personnel your patient identification card. Passing through a metal detector should not hurt your device. However, do not linger near the security system arches or poles. Doing so may interrupt your therapy.

    If you have a spinal cord stimulator

    Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)—You should NOT be subjected to an MRI. The electromagnetic field generated by an MRI may forcefully dislodge implanted components, damage the device electronics, and induce voltage through the lead that could cause a jolting or shocking sensation. Please consult your product manual or doctor for further information.

     

    Last Reviewed: June 9, 2011 V-00207