Voltage-based device tracking in a 1.5 tesla MRI during imaging: Initial validation in swine models

Ehud J. Schmidt, Zion T.H. Tse, Tobias R. Reichlin, Gregory F. Michaud, Ronald D. Watkins, Kim Butts-Pauly, Raymond Y. Kwong, William Stevenson, Jeffrey Schweitzer, Israel Byrd, Charles L. Dumoulin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Purpose Voltage-based device-tracking (VDT) systems are commonly used for tracking invasive devices in electrophysiological cardiac-arrhythmia therapy. During electrophysiological procedures, electro-anatomic mapping workstations provide guidance by integrating VDT location and intracardiac electrocardiogram information with X-ray, computerized tomography, ultrasound, and MR images. MR assists navigation, mapping, and radiofrequency ablation. Multimodality interventions require multiple patient transfers between an MRI and the X-ray/ultrasound electrophysiological suite, increasing the likelihood of patient-motion and image misregistration. An MRI-compatible VDT system may increase efficiency, as there is currently no single method to track devices both inside and outside the MRI scanner. Methods An MRI-compatible VDT system was constructed by modifying a commercial system. Hardware was added to reduce MRI gradient-ramp and radiofrequency unblanking pulse interference. VDT patches and cables were modified to reduce heating. Five swine cardiac VDT electro-anatomic mapping interventions were performed, navigating inside and thereafter outside the MRI. Results Three-catheter VDT interventions were performed at >12 frames per second both inside and outside the MRI scanner with <3 mm error. Catheters were followed on VDT- and MRI-derived maps. Simultaneous VDT and imaging was possible in repetition time >32 ms sequences with <0.5 mm errors, and <5% MRI signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) loss. At shorter repetition times, only intracardiac electrocardiogram was reliable. Radiofrequency heating was <1.5°C. Conclusion An MRI-compatible VDT system is feasible.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1197-1209
Number of pages13
JournalMagnetic resonance in medicine
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • MRI imaging
  • cardiac electrophysiology
  • electro-anatomic-mapping

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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