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Magnetic resonance

Magnetic Resonance is an advanced diagnostic imaging technique, non-invasive and bloodless, that allows the precise diagnosis of multiple diseases, even in the initial stages, producing a three-dimensional perspective of the organs and structures studied.

The patient is introduced into a magnetic field created by a high-power magnet and certain radiofrequency stimuli are applied to study the resonance of the nuclei of their hydrogen atoms. The released energy is detected and collected as a signal by a receiver and reproduced as a tomography image.


Advantages of MRI over other diagnostic imaging systems

  • It is a non-invasive technique.

  • It is a clean and harmless technique.

  • It allows obtaining a large amount of data in a very short period of time and in high resolution.

  • Greater image sharpness and tissue contrast. Make cuts smaller than 1 millimeter, which allows you to locate minimal injuries.

  • It allows you to directly obtain transverse, sagittal and longitudinal images of the body. With CT only axial cuts can be produced and its reconstructions sometimes create unclear images, especially when they are very dense, making interpretation difficult (such as the occipital crest), while with MRI they are not produced.

  • The image is quite similar to that of the CT scan, but has more precision in the characterization.

  • It allows blood vessels to be observed without the need to use contrast methods.

  • It does not expose the patient to ionizing radiation.

  • It has the ability to differentiate different anatomical structures better than any other radiology test. Paramagnetic contrasts such as gadolinium can be added to further differentiate normal from pathological structures and body parts.

Diagnostic possibilities of MRI

  • Magnetic Resonance is currently the main test (what is called "gold standard") in the imaging diagnosis of many pathologies in human medicine. Once the initial limitation of its use, only in neurological pathologies, was overcome, the diagnostic possibilities have been applied to all the structures of the body, just as happened in the early stages of CT, in such a way that the majority of examinations of MRI in humans are not the neurological ones at present.

  • In veterinary medicine, due to the rapid growth of the technical and scientific level, its use is increasingly common, becoming essential to make diagnoses, until now impossible with clinical and other complementary examinations. With complete certainty, Magnetic Resonance will, in a short period of time, be the most useful diagnostic test, also in veterinary medicine.

  • Its indications are very varied, given the great wealth of information in the images it produces, and with advances in the design of new sequences we can carry out a wide variety of studies in different structures of the body.



  • CNS involvement: provides greater resolution and tissue contrast than CT, especially in involvement of the white matter, posterior fossa and brainstem. It is used for the study of these structures affected by tumors, encephalitis, venous thrombosis, demyelination plaques (multiple sclerosis), cerebral infarctions and bleeding, malformations, etc.

  • Convulsive processes and behavioral changes of all kinds.

  • Neuro-endocrine system. Hypophysis.

  • Spinal cord involvement: hernias, protrusions, stenosis, tumors, etc.


  • Tumors: it is very sensitive in tumor alterations of any type and in any organ, even in very early stages, to establish its exact position and surgical planning, prognosis and evolution (especially recommended in feline fibrosarcomas, mediastinal and abdominal tumors).


  • Diseases of the ear, tympanic bullae, sinuses, mouth and throat.


  • Characterization of orbit and optic nerve. Vision alterations, exophthalmos and strabismus.


  • Musculoskeletal system: in bone or muscle injuries, ligaments, tendons and joints (shoulder, elbow, carpus, hip, knee, tarsus, jaw, etc.). It is the best and most reliable procedure to see ligaments, menisci, cartilage and bone marrow in a bloodless way. Dysplasias, bone edema, osteonecrosis, fractures, etc. They benefit from high sensitivity.


  • There is the possibility of morphologically characterizing the heart, as well as the circulation, arteries (including the aorta, renal, iliac...) and the different veins. Renal angiograms and thromboembolisms.


  • Currently it is the best test for studying the liver, adrenals, retroperitoneum, kidneys, pancreas, as well as the uterus and adnexa. There is the possibility of performing urograms without contrast. In general, the MRI study is the one that best characterizes each soft tissue pathology.

There is the possibility of making 3D images to macroscopically understand the pathology and its eventual pre-surgical planning.

Diagnostic limitations of MRI

  • Anesthesia of all animals studied. Due to the nature of the test, it is essential that the patient remains as still as possible in order to avoid motion artifacts. The anesthetic plane can be very superficial, since the study does not produce any painful stimulus.

  • It cannot be used in animals that have ferromagnetic metal objects in their bodies in critical locations, although in general the majority of prostheses and material used in traumatology do not have this characteristic, so it does not affect the conduct of the study.

  • Large volume animals, generally more than 70 kg.

  • Study of the thorax and abdomen in very large animals, due to the movement artifacts that occur.

General information

  • RM service hours are daily from Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. It is possible to carry out emergency studies outside of these hours.

  • It is essential to request an appointment.

  • All animals are anesthetized with Isoflurane and monitored by capnography and pulse oximetry.

  • Due to the need to use anesthesia, it is recommended that all patients have a preoperative checkup.

  • The duration of an MRI study is approximately 30 to 60 minutes.

  • The results will be delivered directly to the veterinarian who requests the test in digital format 24 hours after completion. Immediate diagnostic guidance can be provided in urgent cases.

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