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  • Magnetic Resonance Enterography

    What is Magnetic Resonance Enterography (MRE)

    Magnetic Resonance Enterography (MRE) is an advanced, accurate and noninvasive diagnostic imaging test to assess and evaluate certain gastrointestinal disorders, including inflammatory bowel diseases, such as Crohn’s disease, infectious enteritis, small bowel lymphoma and intestinal tuberculosis.

    A single test may determine the status of disease and also assess for complications, including abscess, fistula, or obstruction. In addition, follow up studies may be performed to assess response to treatment. These procedures may also be indicated for occult gastrointestinal bleeding or to assess for focal small bowel pathology. The bowel wall is well appreciated with MRE so that tumors within the intestinal wall may be identified, including lesions that may not be visible within the bowel lumen with standard endoscopy or capsule endoscopy.

    Further, since MRE does not use radiation, it can be especially useful in patients who are younger or who may need to undergo numerous future studies.

    MRE and Chron’s Disease

    MR enterography is an effective tool to evaluate and guide treatment of patients with Crohn’s Disease (a common form of inflammatory bowel disease that typically affects young people) without exposing them to radiation.

    “Nearly one-hundred percent of physicians who use MR enterography reported that they found information from the test useful for guiding patient management,” says Dr. David Grand, MD, lead author of a study performed at theWarren Alpert School of Medicine/Brown University in Providence, RI.

    “Crohn’s disease typically affects young people and will be a chronic disease throughout their life, requiring them to have multiple diagnostic imaging procedures. These young patients are too often exposed to multiple doses of ionising radiation, the long-term effects which may be quite dangerous. Additionally, patients are often given very effective but potentially toxic ‘biologic’ therapies to help reduce inflammation,” said Dr. Grand. “MR can also be used to see if these agents are working without exposure to radiation,” he said.

    MR enterography is beneficial to the patient because it not only provides the same information regarding the extent of small bowel disease as CT, but we believe is superior at judging whether disease is active or chronic all without exposing the patient to radiation. Judging whether disease is active or chronic is critical to deciding on medical versus surgical treatment and we believe MR excels at making this distinction,” said Dr. Grand.

    “There are many physicians who are using MR to diagnose and guide treatment of patients with Crohn’s disease. MR offers an immediate and lasting effect on the management of the disease without exposing patients to radiation.”

    40 year old man with Crohn’s disease. Coronal contrast enhanced fat-suppressed T1W 3D gradient echo image shows a long segment of bowel wall thickening and inflammation involving the proximal ileum (arrow).

    To find out more or to schedule an appointment for your patient at one of our locations, call: 1-877-564-5227 or 905-855-1860.

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