Magnetic resonance imaging of patients with airway stents
Airway stent implantation is a highly effective treatment for airway stenosis. However, it is presently unclear whether patients with airway stents can safely undergo magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Such stents may be metallic or non-metallic, and MRI may induce stent dislodgment or heating and may be associated with stent-induced artifacts. We thoroughly reviewed the literature, experimental data, and manufacturer information on non-metallic, stainless steel (SS) and nickel-titanium alloy stents. Non-metallic stents are made of non-ferromagnetic materials associated with no MRI concerns. SS stents may shift in a magnetic field, generating significant artifacts. Nickel-titanium alloy stents are not at risk of dislodgement or heating, but may create some artifacts affecting image quality. Both non-metallic and nickel-titanium alloy stents are safe for patients who must undergo MRI. However, the safety of SS stents depends on the type of steel used.