MRI Research Amsterdam UMC

MARVY: Gamechanger in Development of MRI based endovasculAR procedures for Vascular surgerY

In the MARVY project we work with patients that are diagnosed with an abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA). This is a pathological dilatation of the aorta in the belly region. The major complication that comes with it is rupture, leading to bleeding into the abdomen which has a high mortality rate above 80%. To prevent rupture we can perform elective surgery whereby a stent is placed in the aorta to shield the aneurysm wall from the blood flow and thereby lower the change of rupture. After patients are diagnosed they will undergo imaging at regular time intervals to determine the diameter of the AAA. When the diameter reaches a certain threshold the patient is eligible for operation, in that case we believe that the risk of rupture is generally higher than the risk of the operation.

Patients with an AAA undergo a lot of imaging. Not only to check the diameter of the AAA but also when patients are eligible for endovascular treatment of the AAA because we need imaging to plan the operation. The endovascular aneurysm repair (EVAR) takes places under X-ray guidance. After the operation people also receive follow-up imaging at a regular interval to check for possible leaks around the inserted stent graft. All together patients undergo a lot of imaging in the current management of AAA. Also, a lot of the used imaging techniques use radiation. Which is harmful both for the patients and the physicians.

The MARVY project has as primary goal to reduce radiation exposure to a minimum for both patients and staff and improving clinical outcomes of AAA management. We use advanced MRI sequences as radiation-free aternatives for X-ray and CT, in the pre-, peri- and post-operative setting of AAA care. In that way we can do timely intervention without using radiation.