cardiac imaging
CMC is committed to providing unparalleled cardiovascular care to those we serve. State-of-the-art imaging is a major driver in how cardiac patients are managed. It helps in medical management, surgical expertise, and in understanding heart disease, overall. That has significant implications for both the treatment of individual patients and in the prevention of the overall population.

CMC’s New England Heart & Vascular Institute subspecialty trained physicians are at the forefront of providing advanced imaging. They are able to dig deeper and better understand the causes of heart disease and heart failure through more detailed images of the heart in patients who may not otherwise get answers from traditional testing.



A computed tomography (CT) scan is used to help determine plaque buildup in the arteries (calcium score), fluid buildup around the heart, or other abnormalities. It is also frequently used to plan for valve replacement and cardiac ablation procedures. A cardiac CT is a painless exam. The scanner makes sweeping arches over the patient’s chest to take the images. The patient lies on a table during the exam and is injected with a contrast dye, which often causes a warm, flushing sensation.


Cardiovascular magnetic resonance imaging, also known as cardiac MRI, is a non-invasive, no-radiation option for patients. Cardiac MRI uses a magnetic field and radio waves to get clear, sharp pictures of the heart and major blood vessels. Cardiac MRI provides detailed information on the type and severity of heart disease to determine appropriate diagnosis and specialized therapy of heart problems, such as coronary heart disease, heart valve problems cardiomyopathy (abnormal heart function) or damage from a heart attack. 

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Cardiac PET imaging provides diagnostic accuracy, excellent quality, and the ability to detect disease before symptoms are present. This extremely effective imaging tool is used to diagnose cardiac disease with higher accuracy and lower radiation exposure than traditional stress testing. During this test, you will be asked to lie down on a scanning table developed especially for the PET camera. Medication is administered through an IV line in a vein in your arm. Small pads called electrodes will be placed on your chest to monitor the electrical activity of your heart throughout the study. A small amount of radiopharmaceutical is given through your IV line, enabling the PET camera to capture images of your heart. 

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A transesophageal echocardiogram (TEE) is similar to a TTE in producing real-time images of the heart. This lets the doctor see pictures of the heart without the ribs or lungs getting in the way. A TEE is done when your doctor needs a closer look at your heart or does not get all the necessary information needed from a regular echo.  During a TEE, the patient is placed under sedation while a long, thin scope with a small ultrasound probe at the end is placed down the patient’s esophagus. In addition to evaluating the heart’s structure, a TEE helps guide interventional procedures such as the WATCHMAN™ device and MitraClip® procedure.   


A transthoracic echocardiogram (TTE or echo) is an ultrasound that produces real-time images of the heart, providing information about the size, structure and function of the heart. This allows physicians to see the overall health of your heart, including the function of your heart valves and chambers. First, a cooled gel is applied to the chest. Then, a small, hand-held wand is placed over the surface of the chest and transmits high-frequency sound waves to create the picture.

What is

advanced cardiac imaging?

Vikas Veeranna, MD explains how advanced cardiac imaging is the backbone of care at CMC's New England Heart & Vascular Institute.

Cardiac PET & Cardiac MR

New programs at CMC help provide answers

More detailed images of the heart help patients who may not otherwise get answers from traditional testing.

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Meet our

Cardiac MRI Team

Our team of specialists use the latest technology to create detailed images of your heart to diagnose and plan treatment.

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