The MUGA scan
what it is, how it is used
By Richard N. Fogoros
The MUGA scan (MUltiple Gated Acquisition scan) is an extremely useful noninvasive tool for assessing the function of the heart. The MUGA scan produces a moving image of the beating heart, and from this image several important features can be determined about the health of the cardiac ventricles (the heart’s major pumping chambers).
the MUGA scan gives an accurate and reproducible means of measuring and monitoring the ejection fraction of the cardiac ventricles.
The left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) is an excellent, and the most commonly used, measure of overall cardiac function. The ejection fraction is simply the proportion of blood that is expelled from the ventricle with each heart beat. So, for instance, if the left ventricle ejects 60% of its blood volume with each beat, the LVEF is 0.6. (A normal LVEF is 0.5 or greater.)
the MUGA ejection fraction is highly accurate, probably more accurate than that obtained by any other technique.